New York, NY Solstice, Sol Purpose, Bright Power, and Green City Force have formed a partnership to build, subscribe, and operate a portfolio of community solar installations on New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) properties throughout the five boroughs. The projects will serve low-to-moderate income (LMI) households with a focus on residents of NYCHA properties, and are a part of NYCHA’s ACCES Solar program, which stands for “ACcelerating Community Empowered Shared Solar.”
Developed on 73 roofs across nine NYCHA developments, the projects together will account for up to two megawatts of additional clean energy production, enough to power approximately 350 underserved households.
The community solar projects will enable NYCHA residents and other LMI households in all five boroughs to enroll in solar farms and save between 10%-15% on their monthly electricity bills as compared to standard Con Edison rates.
Sol Purpose will develop and provide financing for the projects, Bright Power will design and install the solar arrays, and Solstice will manage community outreach, subscriber qualification, and enrollment. AmeriCorps green jobs training program Green City Force will lead workforce development efforts in the NYCHA community.
“This partnership helps ensure that NYCHA residents can both participate in the green jobs economy and have access to low-cost solar power,” said NYCHA Executive Vice President for Community Engagement and Partnerships Sideya Sherman. “We thank Sol Purpose, Solstice, Bright Power, and Green City Force for keeping public housing residents at the heart of their green energy opportunities.”
In addition to the savings that they will bring to project participants, the installations will provide renewable energy to the surrounding area and employment opportunities for NYCHA residents. Adding to the project’s overall local impact, developer Sol Purpose will dedicate proceeds from the project to directly fund public benefit programs for LMI and other underserved communities in New York City. Green City Force will work with the NYCHA community to hire and train public housing tenants to support the project, with a goal to create up to 12 full-time jobs as a result of the project. These residents will work with Bright Power to build the arrays, and also join the Solstice team to facilitate community outreach and enrollment.
Set to begin construction in 2019, the installations are part of NYCHA’s plan to install 25 MW of solar on its affordable housing sites by 2025 and will contribute to New York State’s goal of getting 50% of its electricity from renewable energy by 2030.
“This project team is honored to have been selected to provide another two megawatts worth of community solar to NYCHA residents,” said Solstice Co-Founder and CEO Steph Speirs. “These projects are an unparalleled opportunity to bring affordable, inclusive clean energy to New Yorkers, and we’re excited to work with the NYCHA community to make them happen.”