SBD/Issue 218/Facilities & Venues

Pocono Raceway Plans To Construct Large Solar Energy Project

Pocono Raceway Plans To Construct World's
Largest Solar Energy Project At Sports Facility
Pocono Raceway "plans to construct the world's largest solar energy project at a sports facility," according to Viv Bernstein of the N.Y. TIMES. About 40,000 photovoltaic panels will be "installed on 25 acres across the street from the racetrack on property that had been used as a parking lot for races." Pocono Raceway President Brandon Igdalsky said that the solar farm is "expected to generate three megawatts once it is completed, in spring 2010, making it Pennsylvania's largest such facility." The project is expected to cost $15-17M but "more than pay for itself over time." Igdalsky said that the track "decided to go this route when deregulation threatened to raise the track's annual power bills by nearly" 40%, to as much as $500,000. Raceway officials "anticipate generating considerable money each year ... by selling the energy produced to PJM Interconnection, a regional transmission organization that operates a wholesale electricity market and grid." Bernstein notes generating solar power energy at sports facilities "appears to be catching on." Evolution Energies Founder Christopher Moffatt, whose company worked with Pocono Raceway, in an e-mail said that the company was "involved with several professional and college football teams looking at similar options for their stadiums." Some arenas that host NHL teams are "also discussing the concept" (N.Y. TIMES, 7/31).

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