PESCO Operations & Technology Center
Best Project

Owner/Developer: Westfield Co.
Client: Panasonic
Lead Design Firm/Structural Engineer: Farnsworth Group
Civil Engineer: Calibre Engineering Inc.
General Contractor: M.A. Mortenson Co.
MEP Engineer: Mazzetti+GBA
Subcontractors: Encore Electric Inc.; AMI Mechanical Inc.

More than 100 scientists, engineers and managers will eventually work in the first vertical construction project to be completed at Denver’s smart-city development, called Peña Station NEXT. The 112,500-sq-ft building for Panasonic Enterprise Solutions Co. (PESCO) required close coordination with Denver International Airport, the city and county of Denver, Fulenwider and Xcel Energy, among other entities in the area.

Situated at the 61st Avenue and Peña Boulevard light-rail stop on Denver’s new University of Colorado A-Line, which runs between downtown and the airport, the project is futuristic in many ways. Panasonic plans to use driverless shuttles to carry employees from the rail stop to the new building.

Next door is the area’s first battery-storage project, a key piece of a planned micro-grid owned by Xcel Energy. The micro-grid is key to the overall smart-city concept. It is the first of its kind in Colorado and the first one owned by Xcel Energy.

Primary building systems for the Panasonic structure include tilt-up concrete panels and structural steel, with extensive use of glass in the office areas. Specialty electrical systems were constructed to service the testing and development needs of a lab inside the warehouse and include roof-mounted solar panels. The project is pursuing LEED Gold certification.

The facility accommodates the professional staff of PESCO’s Solutions Group and Sensory Solutions Group as well as Panasonic CityNOW, the company’s smart-city initiative in North America.

The building also includes a 24/7 operations center to monitor a nationwide network of large-scale solar photovoltaic installations.

With development of Peña Station NEXT well underway, there’s more to come in Denver’s smart-city arena. As additional residential and mixed-use development at the site continues, residents will begin to see multiple fiber-optic cabling infrastructure, a network of programmable LED street lights and on-street cameras as well as video analytics technology for parking, traffic and security management.

The project sustained no OSHA recordable incidents or lost-time accidents.

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