District Energy: Now's the Time NRG Energy Center Minneapolis provides energy-efficient and environmentally sound district heating and/or cooling services to buildings in downtown Minneapolis. It also operates a separate district heating system that serves a hospital and university.

Around the clock, NRG Minneapolis produces and distributes steam and hot water for heating and chilled water for cooling. We serve more than 100 downtown buildings, heating more than 43 million square feet of space and cooling more than 22 million square feet. That means we provide enough steam to heat the equivalent of 15,000 to 20,000 typical Minnesota homes and enough chilled water to air condition 12,000 to 15,000.

System Profile - Downtown

Area served: 130 square blocks of downtown Minneapolis

Buildings on system: District heating, approximately 100 buildings; district cooling, more than 50 buildings

Building space served: District heating, more than 43 million square feet; district cooling, more than 22 million square feet

Total System Capacity: 1.1 million lb/hr of steam; 40,000 tons of chilled water

Plants: NRG Minneapolis' downtown system comprises seven plants housing a total of 10 boilers and nine chillers. The main plant, which generates and distributes steam and chilled water, is located at Eighth Street and Fourth Avenue South. The system also includes six satellite district heating and/or cooling plants: Convention Center, Foster House, First Avenue Cooling Plant, Baker Center, North Riverfront Plant and Macy's.

System Profile - Fairview Augsburg

NRG Energy Center Minneapolis operates the Fairview-Augsburg Plant near downtown Minneapolis, which has been supplying district steam to Augsburg College and the University of Minnesota Medical Center, Fairview campus, since 1997. The Fairview-Augsburg steam plant was renovated after the two adjacent campuses jointly decided in the early 1990s to outsource their energy services. Previously, each institution had produced and distributed its own steam for heating until the 1980s, when they connected to steam service from the nearby University of Minnesota, which they used until 1997.

Services provided: Steam for space heating, instrument sterilization, kitchen operations.

Area served: The 23-acre campus of Augsburg College and the University of Minnesota Medical Center, Fairview campus; supplying steam to nearly 25 administrative and academic buildings.

Representative Customers

  • IDS Center
  • Wells Fargo Center
  • Target Plaza North and South
  • Marriott City Center
  • Marquette Place
  • Hotel Ivy and Residences


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