Monday, November 27, 2017

Central Park Water Supply Pump Station (C4)

This station was across B&OCT's Homan Yard from Sears' distribution center. This is the smokestack I saw in the background of some of the pictures I took where the Sears buildings used to be. Like the Springfield Station, this station should be converted from steam turbines to electric motors. Construction is estimated to cost $80m and begin in 2015 or 2016. [SlidePlayer, Slide 23, pptx format]

3D Satellite
Street View
A Flickr photo indicates this station was built in 1899.

Intelligent Design & Construction Solutions (source)
The Central Park Pumping Station Electrification project is to convert a steam-powered pumping station to electrically driven pumps, and rehabilitate and upgrade the electrical services to the pump station. Built in 1899, it is one of several large City of Chicago steam-powered pumping stations. IDCS was tasked by Greely & Hansen Engineers, the lead Engineering firm, to provide design and construction services for various tasks of the project. IDCS developed a technical analysis with life cycle cost of the alternatives available to drive the pumps. These included throttling, eddy current drives (ECDs), slip power recovery with wound rotor motors (SPR), and variable frequency drives (VFDs). The alternatives were presented in several workshops, and VFDs were finally selected. Detailed design of the pumping station’s auxiliary systems including: CCTV, Access Control, Telephone, Internet, Public Address (PA), Intercom, and Emergency Lighting. The CCTV (over 50 cameras) and Access Control Systems are integrated into the Central Security System at the Jardine Water Purification Plant. The telephone and internet were each linked to the appropriate city government wide system. The Emergency Lighting system was developed using a central UPS and egress lighting which doubles as night lighting. This eliminated the need for independent battery units and the associated maintenance headaches. Before the cut-over of steam-driven pumps to electric pumps, new temporary generators were needed for complete support of the new electric pumps during construction. IDCS is also providing bid services and services during construction.
I guess the Springfield conversion made the correct decision to use Variable Frequency Drives. It seems to be a waste of money to study which type of motor to use each time they convert one of their four steam plants to electricity.

3D Satellite
Because this site is not large enough to have a coal storage pile like the Western Avenue Station did, I assume the tall, skinny rectangular building on the east side of the plant is for coal storage. In fact, you can still see the hole in to which hopper cars on an industrial spur from Homan Yard would dump the coal.
1938 Aerial Photo from ILHAP
That storage facility did not exist in 1938. I remember since moving to Illinois in 1973 that there was a significant coal strike because I was glad that, at the time of the strike, ComEd generated about half of its power with nuclear stations so the impact of the coal strike was reduced. (The other half would have been coal because that was long before abundant natural gas and renewable energy was available.) So maybe the storage facility was built in anticipation of strikes. I wonder how many weeks that storage capacity would support.

A comment on a B&OCT posting:
Les Wuollett Use to spot coal cars at what we called "The Pump" when I worked at Homan Ave yard.

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