Cortez Recreation Center
McKinstry installed integrated solar panels to the Cortez Recreation Center and performed a number of additional upgrades. In 2008, the center consumed $123,107 of electricity, or 3,419 kilowatts, and $89,392 of natural gas, or 75,129 Therms. One Therm (heat energy measuring unit), is approximately equivalent to burning 100 cubic feet of natural gas.
This project is intended to provide a more comfortable recreational experience for Cortez residents and a more energy efficient facility for the City. To help accomplish this goal, McKinstry installed two racks of solar panels on top of the Recreation Center that face south. One group will include three rows of eight panels, and a second group will have one row of sixteen. Room has been left in the existing plan for creating an additional solar panel if required.
The solar panel upgrades are meant to heat the water in the recreation center swimming pool. The facility’s pool is expected to experience a temperature rise from around 86 degrees to 90-29 degrees as a result of the solar-thermal upgrade.
Ongoing upgrades to the Recreation Center will include lighting retrofits for the pool, installation of variable-frequency drives to pool pumps, applying new digital control systems, and efficiency improvements to the heating and cooling system of the facility. Once all upgrades are completed, annual energy savings costs will be $32,280.