North Bay’s Community Energy Park, the first of its kind in Canada is officially open.

Matt Payne, president and CEO of North Bay Hydro Services says it’s a big day for North Bay Hydro.

He says the North Bay YMCA, Memorial Gardens and Thompson Park are all powered by the park.

” and provide heat in the form of hot water to both YMCA and Memorial Gardens. That’s how it’s going to be used from a electrical infrastructure point of view. It’s also going to be a demonstration and education site,” he says.

Payne says another plus is that if there’s a major power outage in the city service will not be impacted at these facilities.

Payne says in certain situations the park is providing power to 87 % of the total power that these facilities consume.

“and about 55 % of the heat that is generated here. But on any given day it can be doing all of those requirements. It depends on what the electrical and heating requirements are at both of these facilities,” he says.

Terry Young is the vice president of the Independent Electricity System Operator. He says North Bay is on the ground floor of something in a changing world.

“We’re seeing more technologies including solar and battery. You’re seeing other types of generation that are popping up that are closer to where the communities are,” Young says

Payne says this isn’t the first time North Bay Hydro has looked at the technological possibilities and made things better.

“We have a generator at the North Bay Regional Health Centre and at the Merrick Landfill. This is about moving things forward and trying new technologies and seeing how we can help,” Payne says.

All three levels of government contributed funds to the project.

(photos by station staff)

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