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Orange Lake Resorts Installs $1.4M Tunnel System to Reduce Carbon Footprint

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Orange Lake Resorts principals
(From left) Spence Wilson Jr., Orange Lake Resorts; Terry Satchwell, Pellerin Milnor Corp.; Mike Steiner, Steiner-Atlantic; and Spence Wilson Sr., Orange Lake Resorts, on the day of the project's ribbon-cutting. (Photo: Pellerin Milnor)

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conveyor
The four-compartment conveyor loads the tunnel washer. (Photo: Pellerin Milnor)

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Bill Bell
Bill Bell (right), Steiner-Atlantic, demonstrates the new equipment for the Wilsons.

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A 40-bar single-stage press removes excess moisture from washed goods.

Staff Writer |

ORLANDO, Fla. — Developer Orange Lake Resorts, which operates seven Holiday Inn Club Vacations® resort destinations, has taken steps to minimize its carbon footprint by introducing a new $1.4 million Milnor tunnel system that will save 15 million gallons of water per year.

For nearly 30 years, Orange Lake Resorts operated the laundry facility for its flagship Orlando resort using three 600-pound washer extractors and six 200-pound dryers. The facility processed 1,800 pounds per hour (using 3 gallons of water per pound), completing a day’s work of 28,800 pounds over two shifts.

While Milnor’s PulseFlow Technology—which employs enhanced, intermittent counterflow and RecircONE® pump arrangement that continuously circulates water in the first module—was gaining momentum and praise, Orange Lake’s laundry and facilities leadership teams decided that it was time to make a change.  

“Orange Lake has an eye on the staff’s overall environment and on improvements in efficiencies and expenditures,” says Bill Bell of Steiner-Atlantic, Milnor’s local distributor for the Orlando area, “so we were thrilled that they committed to the corporate investment of introducing this modern equipment from the best in the industry.”

Orange Lake’s new equipment consists of a PulseFlow CBW® washer (150-pound capacity per module), a 40-bar single-stage press and four pass-through dryers. The equipment is capable of processing 4,000 pounds of laundry per hour, using only 0.3-0.4 gallons of fresh water per pound, with a day’s work of 30,000 pounds finishing in just one shift. 

Lower utility and water consumption isn’t the only benefit associated with the new tunnel system. The CBW’s four-compartment loading conveyor improves labor conditions, Milnor says, because the soiled goods require less handling by staff.

Once sorted, the goods are loaded on the conveyor to be discharged in the tunnel’s load chute. After the wash, goods are automatically discharged to the press, which removes excess moisture. After extraction, an automatic shuttle transports each “cake” to a waiting dryer.

In the days before there was a tunnel, Orange Lake staff would have to sort by goods type, manually load soiled goods in the washers, then manually unload and transport the now-heavier damp goods to the dryers/flatwork aisle.

Aside from the tunnel’s ergonomic benefits over large open-pocket washers, its process times are shorter and the quality of linens and towels is enhanced, extending linen life. Additionally, Orange Lake has doubled its hourly production, eliminating the need for a costly second shift.

The Orlando resort, with 2,478 villas and an average of 511,853 annual guests, processes 8 million pounds of laundry per year. Its new equipment enables the company to grow its laundry operation and process up to approximately 10.5 million pounds per year.

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