Kingsway Regional School district eyes solar array project

By Rebecca Forand | South Jersey Times on June 09, 201

A large solar project is in the works for the Kingsway Regional School district, which will offset nearly three quarters of the electricity used in the two schools and have no cost to the district.

The board of education began researching installing solar panels on the Kingsway campus for some time, but the board was not sure what the most feasible way to do so would be.

In a study by Blue Sky Solar, it was determined that two empty fields on the school’s property would be ideal for solar arrays due to the fact that they are restricted for school construction by the department of environmental protection.

“They are unused, unusable for any other purpose. It’s really prime for solar,” said Matthew Stanger, the chief development officer of Blue Sky Power.

Each of the fields would be able to hold about 3,400 solar panels. In addition, some of the schools’ smaller parking areas could have canopies added to them with solar panels attached. In this model, the parking spaces would be covered with panels, like an open-air carport, utilizing the area above the parking lots.

The project will have no cost to the school district, because a PPA financing plan has been proposed. In this arrangement an outside investor will purchase, install and maintain the solar panels and the district will purchase the electricity back at a reduced rate.

“We’ve been looking at solar for a long time,” said Mark Kehoe, the board of education’s president. “We’ll maximize the use of our space and hopefully we’ll get an energy benefit that helps everyone.”

In addition to the cost savings, the middle and high school students at Kingsway will have the opportunity to use the panels in their curriculum, at kiosks tracking the output of the panels being installed in each school.

The district approved the capital project Thursday and will now send it to the department of education for approval.


Back to NEWS