Site selected for Summerland solar project

Former public works yard and storage area chosen for Solar+Storage Project

The District of Summerland has identified the prime potential site for a municipal solar project.

Following a review of all municipally-owned property, the municipality’s former public work yard and storage area, at 13500 Prairie Valley Rd., 12591 Morrow St. and Denike Street was selected.

Summerland’s Solar+Storage Project includes a one megawatt solar array with two megawatts of battery storage to be placed on roughly two hectares of land within Summerland.

The project is expected to provide localized benefits to Summerland’s electrical utility systems and ratepayers and will also provide resiliency for critical infrastructure.

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Municipal staff say it will also be a showcase for using clean technology.

“Summerland’s Solar+Storage Project is unique to the Okanagan and is just one step in the district’s plan for sustainable initiatives that make the community more resilient,” said Mayor Toni Boot. “The next important step in this project is to share the district’s preferred site with the community. There are a number of reasons that council supports this location. Personally, high on my list is the potential to repurpose this previously developed site that is not currently in use.”

The site includes a large paved section in an area where trees and vegetation have been removed. Materials from previous uses are scattered throughout the site.

The project will be an opportunity to return the disturbed area of the site to productive use.

Recreation amenities, including maps, trail signs, picnic benches, e-bike charging stations, information kiosks, garbage and recycling bins will be added.

“By generating solar energy locally, the District of Summerland will strengthen its existing utility resource, enhance the local economy, create jobs, increase energy security and independence, support innovation and attract new residents and visitors,” a statement from the municipality reads.

A meeting about the site will be held at Centre Stage Theatre on Monday, May 6 at 6 p.m. The meeting is open to the public.

Residents may be added to the municipality’s solar energy email list by contacting climate.action@summerland.ca.

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