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Project Details

Miller Community Center - Solar Microgrid Project

Posting Date: 11/26/2019                

Contact: Bianca Smith - Project Manager (Seattle City Light)

Phone: (206) 549-5062

Project Update (8/5/2020):

Public Art in Progress for Miller Community Center

The design process is underway for new interior artwork at Miller Community Center. Seattle City Light, Seattle Parks and Recreation and the Office of Arts & Culture have commissioned the artwork as part of the solar microgrid project. This art project aims to involve and reflect as many of Miller Community Center's patrons as possible. Lead artist Julia Harrison invites the public to participate in the design process in these ways:

SURVEY: Visit the project webpage to respond to a short survey:

MEETINGS: Learn more about plans for the project at either of these online public meetings. Please RSVP to for the Zoom meeting link.

  • Tuesday, August 11, 4:30-5 p.m.
  • Monday, August 17, 12-12:30 p.m.

SHARE YOUR STORIES: Send your Miller Community Center stories and photos to

DESIGN: What does the Miller Community Center mean to you? What's your favorite thing about visiting? Can you capture these feelings in a doodle? This video demonstrates a kid-friendly technique that can be used to create new doodles:

For additional information, please visit:

What is the Microgrid Resiliency Project?

Seattle City Light is partnering with Seattle Parks and Recreation to implement a microgrid project at Miller Community Center, located in the Capitol Hill neighborhood. The project will include the installation of a battery energy storage system, solar panels and microgrid controls.

The microgrid will provide backup power storage for the community center during emergency events, such as a windstorm or unplanned power outage. When the electric grid is down, the microgrid will generate and provide power to the community center to keep the center's services and communications operational.

Miller Community Center - Seattle, WA

A $1.5 million grant from the state of Washington will provide a portion of the funds for the project. The City of Seattle is partnering with the University of Washington to perform analytics on the microgrid's community and utility benefits.

How will the project operate?

During normal operations, the solar panels will charge the batteries. When the solar panels are not generating, the batteries can back up the delivery of electricity from City Light's distribution grid. The microgrid will provide backup power storage for the community center during unplanned outages such as a windstorm.

What are the project's benefits?

The project will empower a community to recover quickly from unplanned emergency events and gain technical knowledge on the installation and operation of a microgrid system. Analytics from the microgrid resiliency project will allow the City of Seattle to research and develop similar technologies.

How will the project be funded?

In August 2016, Governor Jay Inslee announced $12.6 million in Clean Energy Fund grants to five utilities in the state of Washington. Seattle City Light's microgrid resiliency project was chosen as one of the recipients for a state clean energy grant from the Washington State Department of Commerce. A $1.5 million grant will provide a portion of the funds for the project. The additional $1.8 million in project costs will be funded by Seattle City Light.

Who did the City of Seattle select to work on the project?

The City of Seattle is working with several groups to learn how the microgrid will impact or benefit Seattle City Light's electrical system and customers. The project will allow the utility to gain valuable insights on what it takes to design, build and operate a microgrid. The findings from this project will also determine how Seattle Parks and Recreation and other city partners can incorporate innovative technologies like microgrids in their operations.

Owner's Engineer: DNV GL was hired for their microgrid expertise. They evaluated sites for the microgrid and will oversee the project through design, construction, commissioning and testing.

Analytics Team: The University of Washington will gather data and perform quantitative and qualitative analysis of the microgrid, community and system benefits.

Building Engineered Systems Contractor: Worley was selected to design, build, test and commission the microgrid.

What is the project schedule?

The design and construction for the new microgrid is scheduled to occur in 2020. Analytics on the project will be completed after the microgrid has been installed.

Who can I contact for additional information?

Bianca Smith
Project Manager
Seattle City Light
(206) 549-5062

Joelle Hammerstad
Sustainable Operations Manager
Seattle Parks and Recreation
(206) 733-9704

For more information regarding the Washington State Department of Commerce's Clean Energy Fund, please visit:


Construction Start: 2020

Duration: Design/Engineering (2019), Construction (2020)

Daily Work Schedule: TBD

Alternate Contact: Joelle Hammerstad - Sustainable Operations Manager (Seattle Parks)

Alternative Contact Phone: (206) 733-9704

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