ORO VALLEY, Ariz. — Oro Valley has begun constructing an array of solar panels on top of covered parking structures at the town hall parking lot. More than 1,000 panels will be installed.
The $4 million project is being funded through federal energy bonding, an Energy Efficiency Conservation Block grant and energy savings. It is expected that local costs will be recovered through energy savings over the next 10 years.
Tucson Electric Power is subsidizing between 50 to 60 percent of the costs for the solar materials as part of its Renewable Energy Credit Purchase Program.
It is estimated that the panels will offset energy needs at the town complex by 60 percent and will result in an average savings of $164,000 per year.
Oro Valley also plans to issue $2.4 million in taxable, direct-pay Clean Renewable Energy Bonds to help finance the project.
A total of six covered parking areas will be constructed and affixed with the solar panels by March or April of 2011 with the majority of construction taking place this month.
All the buildings at the town complex will be powered by the solar installation except the library.