NREL CGI2 Medium Voltage Infrastructure Upgrade

Size: 65,000 SF


Start: November 2021

Completed: Currently Ongoing,

Projected Completion July 2023

Contract Price: 

Initial: $5,686,142

Change Order: $1,008,050*

Final: $6,694,192

* Owner requested added scope

Delivery Method:

Hard Bid


National Renewable Energy Laboratories

Brian Cox (303) 384-7375

Design Team:

RMH Group 

Kristen Cremona (303) 579-1505

[email protected]


Ignacio Alvarado (720) 579-1505

[email protected]


Dan Sandblom (303) 239-0909

[email protected]

Project Description:

The construction of a new Second Controllable Grid Interface capability at NRELʼs Flatirons Campus including all the necessary civil, electrical, mechanical and equipment installation work. The Second CGI will be rated for 19.9 MW of power and will be interconnected to the Flatirons Campus internal electrical buses utilizing existing and new switches to enable parallel operations with the existing CGI as well as independent operations of each CGI simultaneously with various combinations of connected research articles and equipment.

Project Challenges:

Material procurement prioritization was a critical obstacle that required diligent planning and projection for the entirety of the project to ensure these constraints would not negatively impact the delivery timeline. Although an ongoing challenge, sourcing electrical conduit, medium voltage wire, termination blocks, transformers and their components, and other pertinent materials, were intentionally evaluated independently in consideration with the project schedule sequence to maintain continuous installation. Parallel to securing materials to arrive on site when scheduled, daily site logistics demanded considerable analysis to not impede productivity. Trenching and excavating, hydrovacing around numerous existing utilities, and installation of underground electrical rough-in happening concurrently, necessitated detailed coordination. These on-site conditions, coupled with extensive weather complications, magnified the need for
heightened attention to all quality requirements, to purposefully eliminate potential rework.

Project Accomplishments:

Creative problem solving and adaptive resource allocation was a key success that resulted from our cohesive team responding collaboratively to continuous design oversights and unknown existing conditions. Regularly our team and trade partners promptly proposed alternative solutions to Ownership when additional design clarification was required, market constraints were unfavorable, or an unforeseen condition was identified. This repeated achievement cannot be understated when considering each resolution required a large group of stakeholders of separate interests to be mutually agreeable and equitably satisfied.