A 3-megawatt energy park has opened in Crawfordsville.
The Indiana Municipal Power Agency -- a group started by cities such as Crawfordsville which own their own utilities -- has installed 20 acres of solar panels on the city’s northeast side. Crawfordsville proposed a good location, driving some of the cost down.
Crawfordsville mayor Todd Barton says the park also helps the city’s tax base.
“We worked hard to get the largest investment we could, because it’s not just about the power, but this is also now a lot of infrastructure in our community that’s taxable," Barton says. "This will be here for 50 or 60 years and we will be collecting taxes on that instead of a vacant field. So, it’s kind of a win all the way around."
IMPA senior vice president of generation Jack Alvey says the park could power as many as 500 homes, but electricity prices should not be affected.
Alvey says all of the energy collected will go to Crawfordsville.
“Crawfordsville’s electric load is much larger than 3-megawatts,” Alvey says. “So this will more than likely all be consumed right here in Crawfordsville, even though it counts as part of IMPA’s overall power supply to our 59 members. But, physically, it’ll be consumed here.”
Alvey says IMPA favors solar energy over wind energy and has more such projects planned around the state.