Colorado Engineering Company Receives Engineering Excellence Award

Entrance to the Alaska Airlines Atrium at the Climate Pledge Arena in Seattle. Credit: ME Engineers

ME Engineers of Golden was recently awarded a National Recognition Award for exemplary engineering achievement — by the  American Council of Engineering Companies’ (ACEC) — for designing building systems for Climate Pledge Arena in Seattle, Wash., during the 56th annual Engineering Excellence Awards (EEA).

The 800,000-square-foot, 17,100-seat multi-purpose arena is on track to be the world’s first sports and entertainment arena to be certified as net-zero, meaning that it generates as much or more energy than it uses. After the design phase and mid-way through construction, the arena’s owner, Oak View Group, along with the Seattle Kraken and the arena’s new naming partner, Amazon, made a commitment for the facility to use no fossil fuels. ME Engineers quickly reworked building systems to create an all-electric building, taking advantage of Seattle’s clean electric grid, which utilizes mostly hydropower.

Going 100 percent electric required additional electrical equipment to support a new generator and substations, as well as close coordination with the other project team members for the purchase and placement of new equipment for mechanical systems, concessions operations, and the ice rink dehumidification system. Additional sustainable features include a Rain-to-Rink ice system that uses rainwater to create the world’s greenest ice rink, electric Zambonis, waterless urinals and water-efficient showers, solar panels on the Alaska Airlines Atrium and parking garage, and a green Living Wall.

The project is among 179 EEA entries this year representing engineering excellence from throughout the nation and the world. Judging for the awards program — known industry-wide as the “Academy Awards of the engineering industry”– took place in March and was conducted by a national 27-member panel of built environment leaders, along with experts from government, the media and academia. Award criteria focused on uniqueness and originality, technical innovation, social and economic value, and generating excitement for the engineering profession.

Recognition of all 2023 award winners, including top winners — 16 Honor Awards, eight Grand Awards and the prestigious “Grand Conceptor Award” for the year’s most outstanding overall engineering achievement — will take place at the annual EEA Gala Dinner and Awards Program, a black-tie event to be held Tuesday, June 13, 2023, at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Washington, D.C.

The American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) is the business association of America’s engineering industry, representing more than 5,200 independent engineering firms and more than 600,000 professionals throughout the United States engaged in the development of America’s transportation, water and energy infrastructure, along with environmental, industrial and other public and private facilities.

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