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Salt Palace

The 600,000-square-foot project, which is larger than six football fields, includes 11,319 solar panels.
Photo by Adam Barker

Salt Lake County, owner of the Salt Palace Convention Center, recently announced a project guaranteed to set a new standard for hosting sustainable meetings and conventions: the installation of the nation’s largest rooftop solar array atop the Salt Palace Convention Center. The project is scheduled to be completed and operational by January 2011.


The 600,000-square-foot project, which is larger than six football fields, includes 11,319 solar panels. The project more than doubles the current solar capacity of the state of Utah and generate approximately 25 percent of the annual energy consumed at the Salt Palace Convention Center.

Salt Lake County is also installing additional energy efficient equipment in the Salt Palace that will result in utility savings of more than $175,000 annually.

“This project reflects Salt Lake County’s commitment to the natural environment that makes Salt Lake such a spectacular destination and shows its strong commitment to the convention industry in Utah,” said Scott Beck, president and CEO of the Salt Lake Convention & Visitors Bureau. “A project of this scope and scale, combined with our current commitment to sustainable practices, helps move Salt Lake well down the path of being one of the nation’s top locations for sustainable conventions and meetings.”

Due to Utah’s 300-plus average annual days of sunshine, its favorable climate and the fact that Salt Lake’s elevation means less atmosphere to diffuse the power of the sun, the Salt Palace solar project should pay great dividends immediately.

Salt Lake’s solar project is a public-private partnership utilizing Utah’s recently passed House Bill 145 which enables innovative third-party financing options for government entities and certain non-profit entities, thus reducing the up-front cost barrier to solar energy development.

The Salt Lake Convention & Visitors Bureau is a private, non-profit corporation responsible for the promotion of Salt Lake as a convention and travel destination.

 

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