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Solar Highways Feasibility Study

CLIENT: Sacramento Municipal Utility District

The Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) and the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) were interested in the feasibility of installing solar photovoltaic (PV) panels along highway and freeway corridors throughout Sacramento and the State of California.

SMUD contracted with IEC to determine the feasibility and best method of placing utility-scale solar power installations on Caltrans properties along the freeways. To do so, IEC evaluated the cost, performance, and potential barriers to installing the PV arrays at various sites along a stretch of the Highway 50 corridor through Sacramento. The completed study and report identified the potential challenges to developing solar PV along Highway 50 and provided a detailed cost analysis of four different PV systems.

Based on the information gained from this study, SMUD tasked IEC with conducting additional research and developing 3D renderings of the potential solar arrays to determine whether to continue to the next phase of the project. The projects did move forward through a solicitation process; however SMUD did not receive an acceptable bid for the installations.

 

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