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PHOENIX, AZ — At the 3rd St./Washington light rail station in downtown Phoenix, passengers can now enjoy the chill of a solar-powered cooling system as they wait for the next train. The system, which launched last summer, is being activated earlier than scheduled due to the heat spike. The system typically operates May 1 – September 30.
Via a public-private partnership between the City of Phoenix, METRO light rail and NRG Energy, Inc., the company’s NRG Thermal and NRG Solar subsidiaries built the innovative system using solar power and the company’s downtown district cooling system. The district cooling system also air-conditions such prominent downtown facilities as Chase Field, Symphony Hall and the Phoenix Convention Center.
The 3rd St./Washington station is a highly-trafficked platform thanks to the busyness of downtown Phoenix and especially during Arizona Diamondbacks games. The station features push buttons near each seating area that provides blasts of cool air on demand.
METRO is responsible for the development and operation of the region’s high-capacity transit system. The first 20-mile light rail line opened December 2008 and served 13.2 million riders in 2011, exceeding the prior year by four percent. METRO serves an average of 40,000 riders per weekday. It is also planning for six extensions that will create a 57-mile system by 2031.
NRG is at the forefront of changing how people think about and use energy. A Fortune 500 company, NRG is a pioneer in developing cleaner and smarter energy choices for our customers: whether as one of the largest solar power developers in the country, or by building the first privately funded electric vehicle charging infrastructure or by giving customers the latest smart energy solutions to better manage their energy use. Our power generating facilities can support over 20 million homes and our retail electricity providers—Reliant, Green Mountain Energy Company and Energy Plus—serve more than two million customers. More information is available at www.nrgenergy.com.