Wilmette, News

Solar panels approved for Wilmette’s Community Rec Center

Here’s to a brighter future for the Wilmette Park District.

Park Board commissioners unanimously approved on Monday, Oct. 9, a contract with Verde Solutions, of New York, to install solar panels and a solar-energy system to its flagship building, the Community Recreation Center, 3000 Glenview Road.

The agreement marks the end of a two-year process for which the park district had to navigate Illinois law and contract negotiations. The district began reviewing solar contract in 2022 before moving forward with Verde Solutions for both the purchase of rooftop panels and the system.

District officials previously said the panels, which reportedly will be installed at no upfront cost to the district, will cover 90 percent of the CRC’s roof and about 48 percent of the building’s electrical usage. For the remaining 52 percent, the district must purchase its power from Verde Solutions, according to the contract.

Executive Director Steve Wilson said the financial impact to the district will be minimal, and the larger reason for going solar is conservation.

“The real purpose of this is trying to be leaders in our community and demonstrating alternative energies and practices,” he said.

The approved contract is for 25 years, and includes purchase options in at 5-year intervals following Year 10. Commissioners expressed support for purchasing the system following Year 25.

The district has not yet established a timeline for when the panels will be added to the CRC.

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joe coughlin
Joe Coughlin

Joe Coughlin is a co-founder and the editor in chief of The Record. He leads investigative reporting and reports on anything else needed. Joe has been recognized for his investigative reporting and sports reporting, feature writing and photojournalism. Follow Joe on Twitter @joec2319

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