Thanks to a sustainable construction site, the former gas turbine power plant in Fossoli, in Carpi, has been transformed into an innovative logistics hub. After just two years, in March 2019 work concluded to transform the plant area, which had fallen into disuse, into one of two reference hubs for Enel in northern Italy. A covered structure of 20,000 m2 sits alongside an external storage area used for activities linked to the management of the electricity grid. The initiative has provided a new purpose for a facility that was at risk of dereliction, generating economic activity and employment for the local community and stakeholders. Sustainability, the circular economy and workplace safety were the main drivers guiding the project to demolish and repurpose the site. 3,700 tonnes of metallic materials and 7,000 tonnes of crushed concrete were transformed into new resources, while, thanks to a special system, rainwater is collected and used for cleaning and irrigation purposes.
The plant consisted of two methane-powered gas turbine units with a capacity of 90 MW each. The site also included significant auxiliary technological equipment and facilities necessary for the production process: a gas decompression station, diesel starter motors, emergency diesel generators, electrical systems to connect to the high voltage network, fire protection systems, water mains and wastewater treatment plant, office buildings, workshops and warehouses.
The plant, which began operations in 1980, ended up running at an average of less than 500 operating hours per year. Placed in long-term conservation in 2000, the plant was made available again by Enel in 2003 in order to respond to the problems that emerged in the national electricity sector during the summer of that year. In 2013, the units stopped production. In 2017 a “sustainable construction site” was opened that in just two years transformed the site into a logistics hub at the service of the Enel Group.
The local area
Carpi is a perfect example of the industriousness and rich history and culture of Italy’s small towns.
The various textile factories operating in the municipality turned it into a centre of Italy’s clothing industry and a hub for the production of ready-to-wear fashion "made in Italy".
Modena, with its 70 thousand inhabitants, is an example of adaptability to changes that take place due to unexpected events. Examples of this include the response to the earthquake that hit large areas of Emilia Romagna in 2012 and the creation of the Unione delle Terre d'argine, an autonomous local organisation brining together the the municipalities of Carpi, Campogalliano, Novi di Modena and Soliera to improve public services for the local population.