Local, Park Forest

Ribbon Cutting Monday for Water Plant Solar Arrays

solar panels at water plant
A solar panel at the water treatment plant. (Photo: Gary Kopycinski)

Park Forest, IL-(ENEWSPF)- The Village of Park Forest is hosting a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Monday, Sept. 19 to celebrate the unveiling of the roof and ground-mounted solar arrays at the water treatment plant. The event takes place at Park Forest’s Water Treatment Plant, located at 100 Park Street, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., and is open to the public. 

The two-year project has been at the forefront of the village’s solar plan which includes reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 26% by 2025. The total cost of the project was $931,000 but taking advantage of the Federal Tax Credit, the ComEd rebate, and the Illinois Shines Adjustable Block Grant Program, lowered our total estimated cost to $300,000.

Rows of solar panels
Rows of solar panels in the field west of the Water Treatment Plant necessitated building upward for the new water storage tank. (Photo: Gary Kopycinski)

Carrie Malfeo, the sustainability coordinator for the village, says the overall goal is for the village to lead by example.

“We are a designated SolSmart Gold community,” Malfeo said. “That pretty much says that we paved the way for residents to take advantage of solar, to mount on their houses. And one of the ways we wanted to encourage that is to do it ourselves.”

underside of solar panels
The underside of a row of solar panels at the water treatment plant. (Photo: Gary K9opycinski)

Malfeo said back in 2018, they did their research and learned the water treatment facility uses the most energy and contributes the most emissions compared to other village-owned facilities.

“So, the water treatment plan is the highest consuming energy facility in the village,” Malfeo said. “So that’s why it made sense for us to work towards getting this solar project in place.”

detail of a solar panel
Detail of a solar panel at the water treatment plant. (Photo: Gary Kopycinski)

One of the Midwest’s largest solar design and installation firms, YellowLite, installed the solar panels. Malfeo said representatives from the company will be at the ribbon-cutting ceremony with a table to show residents a demonstration of how solar works on a smaller scale.

Solar panels west of the Water Treatment Plant.
Solar panels west of the Water Treatment Plant. (Photo: Gary Kopycinski)

For more information on ways to go green, click here. For questions, contact Sustainability Coordinator Carrie Malfeo at 708-503-8153 or by email at [email protected]

This news comes to us from the Village of Park Forest.