New electrical system supports campus needs

by Laura Mortkowitz

Over winter break, Rider upgraded its Lawrenceville campus in a way that will aid improvements for upcoming years.
An electrical substation was added to the back of campus, behind the West Village Commons, to supply more electricity campus-wide.
“We upgraded the campus electrical system from 13,000 volts to 26,000 volts,” said Mike Reca, associate vice president of Auxiliary Services.
This new substation will help the campus because Lawrenceville was almost at capacity on the system in place. Also, the campus’ power was being fed from Route 206.
On Sept. 22, 2008, a driver crashed his car into a utility pole on Route 206, effectively shutting down power and classes on the Lawrenceville campus.
“So we wanted to, first and foremost, expand our capability for future power use; and second, to make it a system that, hopefully, in the future will be less likely to be disrupted,” Reca said.
The electricity will help the university undertake projects on campus to improve students’ lives. The new electrical system is going to be put to use over the summer when air conditioners are added to rooms in Switlik Hall.
“Now if we ever wanted to expand in the future, [we can],” Reca said. “If we wanted to add air conditioners to buildings, or add another building, we have all the capacity that we need for [electricity]. [The substation] improved everything electrically for us.”

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