September 8, 2017

Companies ink deal for cogeneration facility at Southbridge Innovation Center

Courtesy/Franklin Realty Advisors
The Southbridge Innovation Center.

The Southbridge Innovation Center will soon be home to a cogeneration facility that will deliver one megawatt of power and provide over 70 percent of the center's electricity needs.

The system, which will also provide the sprawling center's heat, includes reactivating the facility's generating plant with the installation of high-efficiency cogeneration and chilled-water equipment.

The six-year deal announced Thursday between real estate development firm Franklin Realty Advisors and Trane Commercial systems incldues Trane designing, building, and maintaining the facility at the 150-acre center.

Trane, a subsidiary of Ireland-based Intersgoll-Rand, will provide $1 million in energy and operations savings and a 4.2 million pound reduction of carbon dioxide emissions after the project is completed, according to a press release.

The savings will benefit the several companies doing business at the 1.2 million-square-foot center, and also the vacant spaces earmarked for laboratory, residential and data storage development.

According to Chip Norton, president and founder of Franklin Realty Advisors, the deal represents an investment of $5.6 million supported by a $1.1 million rebate from National Grid and remaining financing underwritten and funded by Middlesex Savings Bank and MassDevelopment.

"This project demonstrates a huge vote of confidence in our future, and the viability of industry growth in central Massachusetts' commercial and industrial businesses," he said.

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