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Edmonton Energy Playground

London plans to build a roller coaster around its old Battersea power plant. We already have a roller coaster in our mall, so let’s turn the old Rossdale power plant into an Energy Playground!

The idea is to transform the power plant into an urban ruin that will house an “energy playground.” This playground will feature awe-inspiring pieces of equipment, educational displays, and kid-friendly interactive exhibits. These features will make the site a destination that families will visit again and again, even if the displays change infrequently.

The urban ruin concept is affordable because the building is fixed up just enough to be safe. Otherwise, the building is left as-is.* The abandoned industrial look of the building would have a certain cool factor.

Awe-inspiring equipment, such as a giant wind turbine blade, would be affordable because it is obsolete or surplus equipment donated by industry. This is an opportunity for the energy industry to give back to the public and gain some visibility. Unlike most museums, the displays are meant to be touched by visitors.

The educational displays would cover the various power technologies: Nuclear, Hydro, Fossil, and Green. QR codes could be used to provide information about the various exhibits reducing the need for signs and tour guides.

A typical interactive exhibit would be a cluster of stationary bicycles connected to pedal-powered generators so that kids can appreciate how much energy it takes to power a 60-watt light bulb, or their Xbox 360.

The Energy Playground would be electrically self-sufficient through the use of photovoltaic solar panels and a demonstration wind turbine generator. The electricity would be used for lighting, a cafe, and perhaps wi-fi for waiting parents.

The Rossdale power plant has a large flat roof which could collect rainwater for flushing public toilets. The roof could potentially accommodate a roof-top patio with an incredible view of the river valley.

Edmonton needs more tourist attractions and with the support of the local energy industry, the lonely old Rossdale power plant will be up and running again, generating power.. and fun!

*See David Staples, “Let’s save Rossdale Power Plant by letting it crumble” in the March 28, 2013 edition of the Edmonton Journal.

yegken 10 Added 1717 days ago

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