Springfield School District, EDM – Architecture, Engineering, & Management, and Authorized Services of New England (ASNE) received the Project of the Year Award from Generac Industrial Power. The award was presented during Generac’s 11th annual Engineering Power Symposium, May 5-7 in Milwaukee.

The collaboration was recognized for the resilient 1,500 kW Modular Power System (MPS) created to support a nutrition and culinary center serving over 26,000 students in the Springfield, Massachusetts, area.

ASNE determined a solution consisting of three paralleled 500 kW generators would be the best option to back up the 62,000-square-foot facility. The goal of the nutrition and culinary center is to create jobs and provide/serve fresh, rather than packaged or processed food, to students.

“We have a 10,000-square-foot freezer that is full of food,” said Pat Roach, chief financial and operations officer for Springfield Public Schools. “If the power went out we would lose all of it. We have also had a few natural disasters and our food service vendor, Sodexo, helps feed the first responders as well as residents in the evacuation centers. The facility needs to be up and running no matter what in order to provide warm and safe meals.”

Through the natural gas MPS solution, Generac was able to offer the redundancy, reliability, and flexibility the school needed. Generac could guarantee that at least one of the three generators would serve life safety loads in less than 10 seconds.

“We took the need for a large generator for a facility and broke it up into multiple units,” said Robert McEvoy, sales manager, ASNE. “It brought down the amount of gas needed, it brought down the cost of the project, and added the value of redundancy.”

McEvoy said natural gas was the preferred fuel source for this project because of the complications of managing diesel fuel.

“Diesel requires a lot more maintenance from the end-user perspective and if they don’t do that maintenance it becomes an unreliable source,” he said.

The Engineering Power Symposium has been held annually since 2009 as an accredited continuing education opportunity for the many consulting and specifying engineers that specify Generac Industrial Power generators. Over 200 engineers from across North America attended this year’s symposium.