McKinstry, one of the biggest mechanical contractors in the U.S., is working with Amazon, the biggest online retailer in the world. The Seattle Times reported that McKinstry is helping Amazon heat their new Seattle campus with waste heat from a skyscaper data center sitting just across the street.

McKinstry will help Amazon heat its new Seattle campus.


While this is the first known project of its kind in the U.S., it certainly will not be the last if it is deemed successful. Seattle City Councilmember Mike O’Brien believes this waste heat effort could pave the way for more companies in Seattle, and perhaps the rest of the U.S., to look at ways to save more energy and money.

When the weather is cold, the system will send hot water under Sixth Avenue from the Westin Building to the new Amazon campus. Heat will then be extracted from the water to warm the campus, with the water then returning to the Westin Building to cool down the data center.

Final approval on the build is still needed, as well as apporval to maintain and operate these pipes, but Ash Awad, McKinstry’s vice president for energy and facility servicesm sounded confident in speaking to the Times about the story.

“The nuts and bolts are relatively straightforward,” said Ash Awad, McKinstry’s vice president for energy and facility services. “You have this data center that puts off a lot of heat. The question really comes down to what you do with the heat.”