Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Solar Project Bids Rejected for Kennedy Center

Willingboro, NJ - The Township Council has rejected three bids for a solar project planned at the Kennedy Center.

Officials said the bids were rejected because not all the required information was submitted. It is the second time bids have been turned down because of deficiencies with the proposals.

The township plans to install solar panel canopies over parking spaces at the center by entering into a power-purchase agreement with a company that would pay the installation costs and receive any solar renewable energy credits produced.

The benefit to the municipality would be energy savings estimated as high as $40,000 annually.

Bids were submitted by Horizon Solar Energy of Edgewater Park, Just Energy of New York City, and Borrego Solar Systems of El Cajon, Calif.

"We want to go out to bid (again) as quickly as possible," Mayor Eddie Campbell Jr. said. "We need to see the project done as quickly as possible."

The bidders will be given the chance to bid again and provide the necessary information.

The Kennedy Center, formerly a high school, is used by the township for recreational programs and as a senior citizens center.

A power-purchase agreement could last for 15 to 20 years and create annual energy savings. According to figures provided last summer by Horizon Solar Energy, the center's annual electric bill could drop from $134,335 to $94,004.

Under the state's solar renewable energy program, companies are eligible for tax exemptions and incentives in addition to renewable energy credits. The project could possibly include 2,740 panels, each creating 270 watts of power.

It is expected to generate about 800 solar credits annually. The going rate per credit is about $660. The credits would be sold to electric companies to help them meet a state mandate that 2.12 percent of all electricity be produced by solar by 2021.

Electricity estimates for the project are based on the panels getting an average of 4.5 hours of sun each day. The canopies resemble a carport, with the panels angled to get the maximum sunshine benefit.


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