CORPUS CHRISTI - The Corpus Christi City Council accepted a check today for the $87,071.20 that it earned through the American Electric Power Texas CitySmart Program, which helps municipalities save energy and money by providing no-cost facility improvement recommendations.

Corpus Christi worked with McKinstry, a national firm specializing in high-performance design-build, to implement a number of improvements to city buildings as a part of the Corpus Christi Energy Efficiency Conservation Project.

“The City of Corpus Christi takes environmental and fiscal stewardship very seriously. Since 2007, we’ve worked with AEP’s Texas CitySmart Program to identify areas where we can conserve energy, while also saving taxpayers money over the long term,” said Assistant City Manager Wes Pierson. “Actually realizing those savings today is a significant accomplishment for our city.”

As the project’s Environmental Phase 2 came to a close in March, the city reduced its carbon footprint by an estimated 6.6 million pounds of annual carbon dioxide emissions. The environmental impact of the city’s efforts is equivalent to 827 acres of trees being planted or 581 cars removed from the road.

The most recent phase of the project updated 76 city buildings, including the fire, gas and water departments; police stations; the marina; senior and parks and recreation centers; the art museum; American Bank Center; city hall; the health department; and city court buildings. McKinstry worked with city leaders to optimize equipment, replace and retrofit outdated lighting, install low-flow plumbing fixtures and implement controls for more automated and efficient energy use.

“Corpus Christi leads the pack for energy and water conservation in a city of its size. Mayor Martinez and other city leaders have been adamant about investing in facility upgrades and improvements to conserve both environmental resources and taxpayer money,” said Michael Grabham, regional director for McKinstry. “Our team has been proud to partner with the city to optimize the facilities that serve this community.”