Barlow Community Center Solar Training Facility
On Earth Day, April 22, 2016, the City of Hudson launched its new Barlow Community Center Solar Training Center, the first government-owned facility in the region that is designed to train the Hudson Fire Department and Hudson Public Power and to teach school students and the community about solar energy generation.
With $50,000 in funding raised by the Leadership Hudson Class of 2014 and a grant of $22,000 from American Municipal Power to Hudson Public Power, the City’s solar training facility will help teach residents about the significant savings that can be generated through environmentally conscious solar power generation systems.
“Earth Day is the perfect time to launch this new environmentally friendly concept in Hudson,” said City Councilman Casey Weinstein, who is a member of the Leadership Hudson Class of 2014. “This is the first significant solar installation in Hudson, and positions our city as an early leader in investment in solar energy.”
The Solar Training Center will serve as a learning tool for Hudson residents and schools, educating children on the science behind and benefits of solar energy. On the cutting edge of this technology, Hudson will be attractive to prospective new residents, especially younger families who increasingly are interested in clean air and renewable energy. This project adds to Hudson Public Power’s sustainable energy resources, which is approximately 20% of the total power purchased by the City.
It is the first in the region training location for first responders, who increasingly encounter solar panels on roofs of structures they are engaging. The facility also will be used as a regional training center for Hudson Public Power employees who will deal with more solar panels owned by customers in the future.
The project included the installations of 55 solar panels on the building roof and 10 on the ground. On a sunny day, the solar panels will generate approximately 50% of energy needed for the facility’s day-to-day operation.
In addition to actual cost savings, the educational opportunities are immeasurable. The City will offer real-time data from the solar panels to schools and residents through a monitor located at the Barlow Community Center and via the City’s website at www.hudson.oh.us. The website data link will allow classrooms easily access the information online.
Keeping with Hudson’s push for sustainable energy, the City offers a home and business solar panel program for residents and business owners who may want to install their own solar array generation system. Individuals can call (330) 342-1750 for more information if they want to learn how to participate in the solar panel program.