News & Events

City of Norcross Working with Electric Cities of Georgia and GE to Deploy the First Grid Modernization Offering Designed for Community-Owned UtilitiesPDF

GE Innovation is Paving the Way for Small to Mid-Market Utilities to Meet 21st Century Needs

NORCROSS, GA.—November 9, 2011—The city of Norcross, Electric Cities of Georgia (ECG) and GE Energy (NYSE: GE) today announced they are working together to deploy advanced technologies to modernize the city’s electric grid to power 21st-century economic growth. As a part of GE’s Grid IQ™: Solutions as a Service offering, these technologies will enable the city to expand its current capabilities to deliver an array of energy services to more efficiently meet residents’ growing energy needs.

Community-owned utilities are faced with the same energy challenges as the rest of the world— increasing energy demand, environmental concerns, rising costs and an aging infrastructure. GE’s Grid IQ™: Solutions as a Service offering is an integrated grid modernization solution specifically designed for small to mid-market utilities. It offers these utilities the opportunity to deploy smarter grid technologies that traditionally have only been cost-effective to larger investor-owned utilities (IOUs). It also enables them to accelerate deployment with immediate benefits and deliver advanced capabilities while reducing and/or avoiding upfront costs.

These expanded capabilities will offer new services and benefits for the residents of Norcross:

•  Access to more energy usage information
•  Faster response to power outages
•  Pre-payment options to better understand and control energy usage
•  Online portal access to an array of information, including home energy
   usage, patterns and billing
•  Automated meter reading


“The city of Norcross is proud to take the first step to provide our residents with more efficient, reliable and sustainable electricity,” said Bucky Johnson, mayor of Norcross. “Digital technology, like smart phones and iPads, are really driving energy demand and the need for us to provide better energy management tools for our residents. We’re excited to partner with Electric Cities of Georgia and GE Energy to become the first community-owned utility in Georgia to deploy technologies that bring the promise of active energy management to life for our residents. ”

A key partner in this effort is ECG, which provides strategic services to community-owned utility systems to contribute to the economic growth of Georgia communities and continually evaluates solutions for participant utilities’ needs. ECG chose the GE solution as the best fit not only for Norcross, but also in anticipation of the future needs of other municipal utilities. With this new technology offering, Norcross and other ECG participants now will have access to advanced energy management tools and hardware that will allow them to enhance their reliable and cost-efficient energy services.

“We’re proud to help Norcross pioneer the future of energy in Georgia by teaming with GE, a trusted industry leader, to implement a better way to use and manage energy,” said Walter West, executive vice president of ECG. “The city of Norcross’ electric department is a community-owned asset that has been an investment in the local economy for the past 38 years. With these grid modernization technologies, they are continuing excellent stewardship of a thriving community asset.”

The city will begin deploying the first phase of technology during the spring of 2012, with consumers beginning to experience the benefits later in 2012.

 “GE is excited to provide a new business model that allows Electric Cities of Georgia to offer grid modernization solutions to its utility members, and we applaud the city of Norcross for being the first community-owned utility to deploy advanced technologies to modernize their electrical infrastructure and offer their residents more options for energy management,” said Mike Carlson, general manager, smart grid solutions for GE’s Digital Energy business.

GE Grid IQ™: Solution as a Service offering features three different delivery models: implemented solutions, GE-hosted data service and service-based offerings, all of which can include advanced metering infrastructure, meter data management systems, demand response management system, geospatial information services and outage management system. The solution also will integrate with existing utility systems, such as customer information systems, integrated voice response and customer billing.

About City of Norcross
Often described as “an old town with a progressive vibe,” the city of Norcross is an authentic Southern railroad town, more than 143 years old and encompassing 4.5 square miles. Its small size is no measure of the dynamic revitalization effort that has taken place over the last few years, as it has grown into an upscale community with a diverse demographic. Branding itself as “a place to imagine,” Norcross has emerged as one of the region’s leaders in urban redevelopment, environmental sustainability efforts and economic development success. Stakeholders include an involved residential base and businesses that are integral partners in defining the city’s visionary planning. From being voted the “Best Downtown” in Gwinnett County for three years (Gwinnett Magazine), to being the corporate home of two Fortune 500 companies, the city of Norcross offers a rare blend of rich history and modern energy that makes it an exciting place to live, work and imagine.

About Electric Cities of Georgia (ECG)
ECG provides economic and strategic services to community-owned utility systems that sell public power. An advocate of local communities’ infrastructural and economic success, ECG partners with municipalities and industry experts to find cost-effective solutions that benefit the city, the community and utility customers. For more than 50 years and in many forms, ECG has represented the common interests of cities that sell hometown power in the Southeast. Recognizing that a community-owned utility infuses the local economy, ECG exists to provide resources to ensure structural reliability and economic success.