With the El Pueblo Activity Center crowded with kids at noon on ahot summer day, it’s a small wonder the building would be using moresolar energy than at any other time.
Now, however, the buildingis also producing electricity through 465 solar panels on the roof,enough to power 14 homes and supply 20% of the activity center’s needs.
El Pueblo, 101 W. Irvington Rd., is the first of seven major solar projects in the city to be up and running.
The rest will be operating by December.
Tucson’s mayor says it’s only the beginning.
"Thepublic is demanding it, so you’re gonna see a major movement towardrenewable sources throughout the city," said Bob Walkup, mayor ofTucson.
The seven solar projects cost $4.7-million, 60% ofwhich is funded by incentives from Tucson Electric Power and much ofthe rest by state and federal tax credits.
"Our customers wantus to go in this direction," explains Paul Bonavia, president, chairmanand CEO of Tucson Electric Power. "We think we’re solving a very realproblem by advancing renewable energy, and we think it’s good businessfor our company."