NYC Construction: It’s Electric!

There’s any number of things which New Yorkers do better than anyone else: Ticker tape parades, pizza and building the future, just to name a few. New York State even has the lowest energy costs in the country at $2,524/per person, which, according to the US Energy Information Agency is a dollar less than runner-up Florida and a full $4,291 behind national “leader” Wyoming.

Though, for all the awesome work done to construct a better, more efficient world, we do trail a bit behind in one area: solar panel coverage. The state of New York ranked just 11th in the country for installed solar capacity as of 2018, while the city of New York sits outside of the top five cities by the same measure. However, that may be about to change.

According to a report from The New York Times, a series of privately funded – and publicly incentivized – projects are leading the way down a path toward sustainable solar energy. There are concerns, of course. As famed NYC poet Sean Carter once said, “if sun don’t shine, then sun don’t shine,” but with energy storage technology steadily improving, the Big Apple is making a big bet on solar as a cornerstone of renewable energy infrastructure.

Following in the footsteps of stuytown – which recently installed over 9500 solar panels that generate 3.9 megawatts (3,900,000 watts) as part of the largest installation of photovoltaic (PV) panels ever for an apartment complex – Co-Op City in The Bronx looks to add more 5 megawatts to the city’s overall solar capacity.

Unfortunately, these projects are not a cure-all. While that may seem like an unfathomable amount of energy, according to the Times, that’s only enough to power 1/10th of the total apartments in the housing development. It will, instead, serve as a supplement to the current system in place.

But, as the state pushes towards its goal of 6 gigawatts – or 6,000 megawatts/6 billion watts – by 2023 and the world hurtles towards renewable resources, this is a good (and big) step in the right direction. 

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