Solar farm could be heading to Rockford's west side - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Solar farm could be heading to Rockford's west side

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ROCKFORD (WREX) -

The old Horsman Quarry sits abandoned on Rockford's west side. But a new project could bring it new energy. 

Rockford is working out an agreement with Trajectory Energy Partners to build a solar farm on the abandoned lot.  

"There's enough space there for a two megawatt project," says Trajectory Energy Partners founder Jon Carson.  "That produces enough power for about 400 to 500 homes."

Carson says the location couldn't be better. 

"What better place could there be than an old quarry? Those sites, quarries, landfill sites, they'll never have typical development on them, you can't put a building there, but you're able to put solar there."

"You're taking a piece of ground you probably wouldn't get an development on," says Rockford Economic Development Manager Mark Williams.  "You wouldn't be able to build on it.  It's un-taxed, it's off the tax roll."

With a private company using the land the city would not only be generating tax revenue.

"The city will be able to receive a lease payment on an annual basis," says Williams.  

That lease payment could be roughly $16,000 per year.  On top of the added financial bonuses, the city says there's the possibility this would qualify in the "Solar for All" program, which could help some residents out with lower energy costs. 

"It's really designed to hit neighborhoods and areas or lower income," says Williams.  

"A school or two, local business, a mix really of public entities, businesses, homeowners can all participate, says Carson."

Trajectory Energy Partners is expected to give a full presentation to aldermen at Monday's Planning and Development Committee Meeting.  The company says it hopes to have the project going by mid 2019. 

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