With the Uncompahgre Community Solar Garden, SunShare has contributed a significant amount of solar energy to Colorado’s communities. The new facility, which will be the largest in the state, will generate over 5-megawatts of power, enough to serve upwards of 450 homes along with the Highlands Ranch Community Association and the City of Westminster.
Constructed by E Light Electric, Colorado’s new community solar garden is the first of its size since the Community Solar Gardens Modernization Act was enacted in 2019. The act allowed developers to construct bigger facilities and completely removed any geographic restrictions that may have hindered subscriber participation. With the Community Solar Gardens Modernization Act, the Uncompahgre facility will be able to reach all 13 counties and 40 cities in the state.
According to David Amster-Olszewski, the solar developer’s founder and CEO, the Uncompahgre installation is the 22nd community solar garden for SunShare. He explained that the size of the facility allows it to serve more residents than any of the other gardens in its or any other company’s portfolio.
According to the community solar program, participants that sign up for the Uncompahgre site will be eligible for monthly utility credits. These credits will reduce their energy costs while allowing them to have a positive environmental impact. Throughout the life of the garden, subscribers will work directly with SunShare, who will manage all operations.
Since its inception, SunShare, a Denver-based solar developer, has been responsible for over 100 megawatts of community solar power. The company’s efforts have targeted underserved and low- and middle-income neighborhoods. The developer currently has more than 13,000 Colorado and Minnesota residents subscribed to its programs.
The Uncompahgre facility is just one of several community solar gardens coming online for SunShare in 2021. The company is expecting to bring 7-megawatts worth of gardens online by the middle of the year to serve another 1,200 households.