BRADENTON -- Street closings and an eight-week closure of the Bradenton Central Library are on tap in coming weeks and months as construction on a $12 million "chiller plant" project gears up in downtown Bradenton, officials said Thursday.
Workers have already cut a deep trench just north of the Manatee County Administration Building, 1112 Manatee Ave. W., for piping designed to cool county buildings as part of an overall, long-term energy-savings plan.
The chiller plant is under construction at 323 Ninth Street W., across the street from the Hampton Inn hotel, and work on piping to link it to county buildings will affect street traffic, officials told the Manatee County Commission.
All the piping that will snake underground will be linked to the new plant once construction is completed, said Maggie Daniell, senior manager for fiscal services for the county property management department.
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Pumping chilled water through underground piping could cool buildings up to a mile away. In addition to the chiller plant itself, the project calls for new elevators, air handlers and other energy-saving measures in county buildings.
Three county buildings will be the first to link with the chiller plant: the county administrative building; the property appraiser's office; and downtown Bradenton's Central Library.
The Central Library will be closed briefly later this month, from Nov. 9-11 for asbestos removal, and again for mechanical remodeling and other infrastructure upgrades from Feb. 7-April 15, said David Thompson, building maintenance division manager for the property management department.
An alternate site has been arranged to provide computer services, he said.
"All the other libraries will remain open and fully functional," he added.
A major impact of the project will be the closure of parts of 10th Street West, according to a presentation.
From now to Nov. 15, the first phase calls for partial closure of 10th Street West.
From Nov. 17-29, the intersection at Fourth Avenue West and 10th Street West will be completely closed.
From Nov. 10-Dec. 13, work will be in progress along North 10th Street.
From Dec. 1-13, Third Avenue West and 10th Street West will be partially closed.
Although 10th Street West is scheduled to be lly open for Christmas, partial closure of Third Avenue West is slated for Dec. 1-24; and work on 13th Street West is slated for Jan. 5-17.
The county is partnering with Florida Power & Light Services, a subsidiary of FPL, and Energy Services Co. on the project, which is estimated to save the county $10 million in utility costs over the first 20 years, officials have said. It is also expected to eventually generate revenue as the county chiller plant provides utilities to potential clients, such as the city of Bradenton, SunTrust Bank, and other private businesses.
Sara Kennedy, Herald reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7031. Follow her on Twitter@sarawrites.