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Installation of a solar energy system began this week at the Del Mar Civic Center.
When the photovoltaic panels and battery storage units are activated in October, the building complex at 1050 Camino del Mar is expected to receive half of its electricity from the sun. The project also is estimated to reduce annual electricity costs at the Civic Center by $20,000.
The job began Monday with workers anchoring brackets to flat portions of the roof. Onto those brackets crews will mount nearly 200 solar panels. Energy collected by those panels will feed batteries housed in the parking garage below.
Installation of the solar system represents a final piece of the $19.1 million construction program for the Civic Center, which opened in May and was designed as a “solar-ready” facility. City officials worked closely with the Center for Sustainable Energy to design the solar system.
The purchase and installation of the system will be funded in large part by a $389,000 grant from the California Energy Commission. Awarded in 2017, Del Mar’s “Local Government Challenge” solicitation earned the highest score within its category.
In addition to the system itself, the grant also will pay for a year-long public education effort to showcase the project as a demonstration for commercial buildings. One component of the demonstration is an informational kiosk with real-time displays of the energy generation.
Escondido-based Baker Electric is installing the solar system.
More details about the Civic Center Solar Energy and Battery Storage Project can be found in this agenda report.