Plainville Community Schools, 47 Robert Holcomb Way, Plainville CT 06062, (860)793-3200

Committee to Make Recommendation for Linden Solar Roof System

After assessing a number of options, the Linden Street School Solar Roof Project Subcommittee is recommending a solar panel tracking system developed by OPEL, Inc. for the Linden Street School building. A formal recommendation by the subcommittee to the Plainville Board of Education will be made at the April 7, 2008 Board meeting.

In 2007, the Plainville Town Council requested that the Capital Projects Building Committee form a subcommittee to make recommendations for a solar roof system for Linden Street School. As a result, a five member subcommittee was established including representatives from the Capital Projects Building Committee, Clean Energy Task Force, Board of Education, and Town Council. In January the subcommittee reviewed proposals provided by two solar energy companies - Sun Edison and OPEL, Inc. As a result of evaluation of products from both companies, the subcommittee is endorsing the OPEL, Inc., tracking system. The OPEL product features a number of benefits. The system requires no penetrations to the Linden roof and the configuration of panels is such that the system would be limited in visibility from the street. OPEL, Inc., will provide the first year of electricity at no cost, and going forward, the town would be solely responsible for purchasing the power which the system generates, at a rate lower than the current cost. The system offers a number of additional benefits to the environment, the school system, and the community. The system is eco-friendly, as solar power is noted as one of the cleanest forms of electricity generation. The system also provides an educational benefit to the school district. Once implemented, students have the opportunity to learn about solar energy through observation and demonstration. Benefits to the community include enabling the town to meet clean energy mandates.

"This is going to be the second Photovoltaic system installed in the school district, with the high school’s 175kW being the first. We are proud in Plainville to be a leader in this endeavor to lower the carbon footprint in town buildings," said Plainville Community Schools Facilities Director Steve Busel.

The project subcommittee is expected to make a recommendation to the Board of Education in April. If approved, it is estimated that installation of the system would be approximately 1-2 months.

"I am impressed with the way the committee thoroughly investigated the issues and analyzed the various proposals. It was a great example of how the town and the Board of Education can work together to accomplish goals. This project reflects the dedication of elected officials to proactively seeking solutions to meet needs and save money in the process," noted Plainville Community Schools Business Manager Rich Carmelich.

-Posted on April 3, 2008 at 10:52 AM

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