University of Vermont

Snowy Day

CEF-funded Ecological Design Team is on a roll!

by Katharan M Blofson, Clean Energy Fund Education & Outreach Graduate Assistant

Tad Cooke and Erick Crockenberg's concept design for the Burlington waterfront Moran Plant redevelopment project--entitled "Moran Ecological"--is a top contender!  The pair just graduated from UVM, with a number of ecological design projects and proposals under their belts--including the CEF-funded Ecological Design and Renewable Energy Systems Greenhouse, currently in progress at the UVM Horticulture Farm.  The Moran Plant design is just as innovative, incorporating anaerobic digestion with a combined heat and power (CHP) system that will heat and power the facility, with excess electricity going to the electric grid and reduced rate heating for resident businesses.  

As with their CEF proposal, Tad and Erick have garnered significant support, as well as solid project partners--they've teamed up with Zero Gravity Brewing (which will brew beer onsite) and the Farmhouse Group, which will operate farm-to-table eateries and a banquet kitchen.  The concept focuses energy innovation and sustainable food systems, with a greenhouse for on-site food production, value-added products created from waste streams, opportunities for local farm businesses, and even an aquaponics operation for fish production.   In their vision, the Moran Plant would become not just a destination but a community fixture, fostering education and recreation by partnering with local organizations like the Lake Champlain Community Sailing Center, LocalMotion, and Burlington Farm 2 School.

Moran Ecological has already received tons of positive comments and feedback on CEDO's public participation site--be sure to visit and chime in with your thoughts on Tad and Erick's design before the comment period closes on June 4, 2013!  Proposals will be reviewed, and finalists selected for the next round, shortly thereafter.   The selection process will result in a public ballot vote in March 2014 on $5 million of projects.