YONKERS, N.Y. – A cutting-edge solar power project, one of the largest of its kind in New York, has come to Yonkers.
Developers and city officials unveiled the rooftop solar power system Wednesday on top of Kawasaki Rail Cars, one of several buildings in downtown’s i.Park that plays host to the blue panels.
Covering a roof space the size of two football fields, the solar system is expected to be operational later this month. When it is, some 3,700 panels will supply a significant amount of power to the electricity users in i.Park, officials said.
“This is a win-win on a very large scale and we think that this project provides a template and role model for future commercial energy projects here in New York and beyond,” said Michael Hastings, CEO of project developer Half Moon Ventures.
Covering 110,000 square feet of roof space and stretched across four rooftop areas, the panels can produce as much as 15 percent of the power to the complex, the equivalent of powering 160 homes for a year. The panels have a life expectancy of 20 years, developers say, and will produce the most electricity in the summer, when energy costs are at their highest.
That is a bonus for i.Park tenants, which include the city of Yonkers and Westchester County, who will lock in power rates and see their electric bills slashed, said Joseph Cotter, president of National Resources, owner of the i.Park complex.
“Anything that helps us operate as a responsible member of the community, take good care of our tenants and improve our asset is a welcome development,” he said.
Hastings said Half Moon Ventures, a Chicago-based company, has targeted the Northeast for its solar systems because of high energy prices in the region.
Planning and production of the system has been about four years in the making, developers said. The entire solar panel system took about 18 months to completely install and was supposed to already be operational, but was delayed by Hurricane Sandy, Hastings said.
Mayor Mike Spano said the solar power system is a welcome addition to the Yonkers skyline.
“The city of Yonkers is proud to be home to Westchester County’s largest commercial rooftop solar power system,” he said. “Private sector investments such as this play an important role in helping to blaze a trail toward a greener, stronger New York.”