Distributed Solar Development completed a custom solar canopy project that it designed and built for MGM Springfield in Springfield, Mass. The canopy enabled the property’s United States Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) New Construction Platinum level certification—the first for a gaming resort.
The canopy will contribute to MGM’s stated goal of reducing carbon emissions per square foot by 45% by 2025, using a 2007 baseline. Built with U.S.-made Nucor steel and a proprietary water management system, the 1.382MW solar canopy sits atop the roof deck of the MGM Springfield’s parking garage. It’s expected to generate more than 1,600 megawatt hours of electricity and reduce the property’s annual carbon footprint by approximately 410 metric tons of CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent).
“Our challenge was to design an efficient solar canopy that fit aesthetically with the magnificent MGM Springfield and could be installed at a cost that would deliver savings to MGM under a Power Purchase Agreement,” said Ben Jones, Canopy Team Leader & Director of Engineering at Distributed Solar Development. “We were able to find the sweet spot of electrical, structural, and installation efficiency that’s not only cost effective but stamps MGM as an environmental leader.”
First of many?
DSD is backed by BlackRock Real Assets’ Global Renewable Power platform and GE Renewable Energy. The solar canopy is one of the first projects to be financed by DSD’s new $250 million fund for distributed generation, first announced in October. The fund will help DSD meet growing demand from commercial and industrial clients for clean, renewable energy. It allows DSD to become a one-stop solution for assessing and designing, installing, operating, and maintaining distributed solar assets.
“We selected DSD for this project not only for its deep roots in GE’s 125-year history in power generation, but also for its extensive experience in the region and its roster of top solar industry talent,” said Michael Mathis, President at MGM Springfield. “Our LEED Platinum certification shows what happens when we live our values and make sustainability and renewable energy a cornerstone of our business.”
— Solar Builder magazine