Brown and Caldwell/Poole & Kent Design-Build Team Helps Miami-Dade Score DBIA Award
Innovative cogeneration facility improvement saves Miami-Dade
$650,000 annually, triples the Florida district’s electrical power
& Kent design-build team joined Miami-Dade Water and Sewer
Department to celebrate the department’s first award from the
Design-Build Institute of America, Florida Region.
Miami-Dade’s innovative cogeneration facility improvements project at
the South District Wastewater Treatment Plant is being recognized in
DBIA’s Water/Wastewater category for exemplary collaboration and
integration in the design-build project delivery method.
Brown and Caldwell, along with its design-build partner Poole & Kent,
replaced the department’s existing cogeneration system with
state-of-the-art equipment that generates almost three times the amount
of electrical capacity without discharging additional air pollutants.
This is one of the first cogeneration systems of this size (8Mw) that is
capable of using three different types of fuel feedstocks (digester,
landfill and natural gas) in an infinitely variable mix. The project was
completed on schedule and within budget, providing about $965,000 in
electrical cost savings to the district.
In 2011, Miami-Dade discovered that methane gas produced at the landfill
adjacent to its South District facility, coupled with digester gas
produced within the plant (and natural gas when required), could
significantly cut back the amount of electric power imported from the
grid, reducing the facility's reliance on fossil fuel-produced
“Using biogas provides a cost savings of approximately $650,000 per year
per 2MW cogen unit operating on biogas and/or natural gas,” said Thomas
Potok, Miami-Dade’s project construction manager.
The department opted for the design-build delivery method to tap into
the expected economic benefits quickly, while avoiding its continued use
of imported electrical power, and to meet the requirements of an
imminent consent decree.
“This is a prestigious award for a landmark project in Miami-Dade
County,” Brown and Caldwell Project Manager Bobby Strickland said. “The
department is being recognized for its leadership in completing an
innovative, fast-track capacity upgrade using design-build contracting.”
The Brown and Caldwell team collaborated to design and build this
complex and ambitious project without interrupting service. Keeping the
facility online was imperative because the plant used its existing
cogeneration units to maintain heat in the digesters.
A leader in cogeneration facilities nationwide, Brown and Caldwell was
ideally suited to partner with Poole & Kent because of its design-build
experience and long-standing ties. This relationship fostered an
effective partnership and collaborative mindset to execute a project
with significant scheduling, technical and safety challenges.
Brown and Caldwell reviewed the design criteria, provided innovative
Value Engineering ideas, and developed a Preliminary Design Development
Report, which became the basis of design throughout the construction
“This recognition reflects the tireless work by so many on this team,”
Brown and Caldwell Design Manager Eli Tilen said. “The sheer commitment
by the group at all stages of the project ensured this alternative
approach was successful, despite the inherent complexity of this
Poole & Kent Project Manager Kevin Smith agreed. “The dedication and
professionalism among the project team’s participants make us extremely
proud of this award and what it represents for Miami-Dade Water and
Sewer Department,” he said.
Awards were presented Oct. 8–9 during the 2015 DBIA Florida Region
Annual Conference in Orlando, Fla.
About Brown and Caldwell
Headquartered in Walnut Creek, California, Brown and Caldwell is a
full-service environmental engineering, consulting and construction firm
with 45 offices and 1,500+ professionals across the country. For more
than 60 years, our creative designs and progressive solutions have
helped scores of municipal, federal and private agencies successfully
overcome their most challenging water and environmental obstacles. An
employee-owned company, Brown and Caldwell is relentlessly focused on
client needs, and brings all the essential ingredients® for a
successful project and a standout experience. Service, great technical
solutions, and innovation: these qualities were important to our
founders in 1947, and they still are essential to BC and our clients
today. For more information, visit www.brownandcaldwell.com.
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