District Energy in Trenton

Veolia Trenton

In Trenton, Veolia's district energy network provides centrally-produced hot water and chilled water to approximately 35 customers in the central business district from one cogeneration facility and multiple chilled water facilities.
Located beneath the streets and bridges of Trenton is a network of district energy hot-water and chilled-water pipes delivering environmentally friendly thermal energy to some of New Jersey’s most critical buildings. Combining our underground network with the latest energy efficient technology enables Veolia to help reduce the region’s greenhouse gas emissions and minimize environmental impact. Our district energy networks serve the critical heating and cooling needs of 30 buildings in Trenton. 

Trenton Microgrid

Proposed Trenton Town Center Microgrid

Trenton, like many communities, is vulnerable to grid-wide outages caused by extreme weather events and other emergencies. As the seat of government for New Jersey, downtown Trenton is home to critical facilities and infrastructure that provide essential services during an emergency. These facilities require reliable electrical and thermal utilities to avoid the loss of critical government functions and to respond adequately to a natural or man-made disaster. A microgrid presents a unique opportunity to:

  • Provide facilities 100% of the power needed to serve as assembly areas or emergency shelters and keep critical services functioning.

  • Secure critical electronic financial, legal, and industrial data and records.

  • Create efficiencies and reduce energy costs for city, county and state government by placing power-generating resources closer to end users.

  • Serve as a source of clean power, helping reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

  • Spur economic development and create jobs in and around Trenton.

  • Allow the state to focus on its core business of providing services to residents while Veolia delivers on our core business of utility infrastructure and resiliency.

Proposed Grid


The project will involve expanding the capacities of an existing thermal grid that is owned and operated by Veolia. The expansion will include the integration of distributed energy resources in Trenton municipal buildings. Energy Efficiency Measures (EEMs) will also be used to minimize the demand of grid connected facilities.

The microgrid will combine traditional power systems with remote steam turbines, natural gas powered micro turbines and/or reciprocating engines in a highly efficient combined heat and power (CHP) arrangement. Solar photovoltaic (PV) arrays will also be used during normal operating conditions and provide microgrid members the opportunity to use renewable energy to supply a portion of their load. Recovered thermal energy from the CHP plant will be distributed to end users through Veolia’s existing district energy system, providing efficient energy.

Customers & Production Capacity


  • State, County and City government facilities

  • Healthcare facilities

  • Sports and cultural arenas

  • Prestigious office buildings

  • Hotels

  • Community college


  • 132,352 pounds per hour of steam

  • 14,260 tons of chilled water capacity

  • 6 megawatts of cogeneration capacity

  • Distribution networks of 3 miles of steam and hot water pipes, and 3 miles of chilled water pipes