Kent transport

State grant for solar panels at Kent Senior Center

Kent will get its first solar installation at a municipal facility after the state Department of Commerce awarded an $84,760 grant to fund the project at the city’s Kent Senior Activity Center.

The state Department of Commerce announced $1.4 million in grants to state and local government agencies to install solar panels in public buildings in communities across the state, according to a Sept. 13 news release. The 14 projects funded in this round will support community efforts to transition to sustainable energy sources and result in long-term energy savings that can be reallocated to other needs.

“We are thrilled to bring sustainable solutions to one of our most heavily used public buildings in the city,” Will Moore, the city’s superintendent of facilities, said in an email. “This is the first solar installation in a municipal facility, and its location in our Kent aged activity center right in the city center will give it good visibility as we lead the way in bringing sustainable building solutions in Kent.”

The system should save the city about 25% on utility costs at the Senior Center, Moore said. The Senior Center is located at 600 E. Smith St.

“We will continue the procurement and planning process for this project and our preliminary schedule is finalized in early 2024,” Moore said.

King County received $70,000 to install solar power at the Bow Lake Transfer Station, 18800 Orilla Road S., east of Interstate 5 and just west of Kent at the top of The valley.

This program provides competitive funding to install solar power in public buildings and facilities, helping to reduce energy costs, reduce pollution and introduce solar power to communities across the state, according to the press release. of the Ministry of Commerce. The built environment is the second largest source of greenhouse gas emissions, behind transport. These grants will fund distributed clean energy for schools, affordable housing, and essential public facilities in communities across Washington.

The City of Sequim received a grant in 2020 that installed 132 solar panels on the roof of the Civic Center, saving approximately $3,700 per year and reducing the building’s carbon footprint by nearly 22 tons of emissions of greenhouse gases per year, according to the state.

Applications are now closed for this state grant program. A new program to install solar and energy storage in community buildings will open in the winter.

New roof at the Senior Center

Prior to the solar installation, the Kent Senior Center will receive a new roof. The project is expected to begin in October, Moore said.

Kent City Council in June approved a $421,958 contract with Kent-based Signature Roof Service to install the new roof. Signature Roof Service submitted the only bid for the project to the city.

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