Going greener with another solar carport

Patchogue Village to enter into Phase 2 of sustainability projects

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The Village of Patchogue Board of Trustees voted to enter into Phase 2 of their energy-saving projects with Johnson Controls, earlier this month. The second phase will include another solar array carport, this time at the Long Island Rail Road parking lot, which is village-owned.

“It’s a great idea,” said village BID executive director Dennis Smith, noting that the village was eager to offset the cost of the sewage treatment plant. “It’s something that after the success we had with Phase 1, that always bothered us to still have this enormous bill.”

After the $4.9 million project is paid off, it will offset about 56 percent of the yearly cost to power the village’s sewage treatment plant, which costs several hundred thousand dollars a year.

Despite the lot being owned by the village, Smith said, it does require some approvals by the Long Island Rail Road and is also in the design stages. The project is expected to be completed sometime in October of this year.

The project, he said, will include about five to six solar panel arrays, much larger than the Patchogue Theatre lot carport, and will be located in the center of the lot spanning from the eastern tip by South Ocean Avenue to the west near West Street.

“It’s going to be in the middle of the lot, not near the tracks or the street; it will also be designed to limit snowfall and include proper drainage,” he said.

The project is also expected to include over 35 EV charging stations.

“This second phase sustainability project further solidifies the commitment of village leadership to carbon reduction and public health,” said Chris Fitzsimmons, LEED GA, BPI of Johnson Controls. “The nearly one MW solar carport project at the Long Island Rail Road station is a big piece of the revitalization of that area of the village.”

The original Phase 1 dollar-neutral energy-savings project, featured a total of 14 energy conservation measures, beginning with work at the Patchogue Theatre for Performing Arts and ending with the solar carport in the Oak Street lot behind the Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts. Also, all 35 miles of roadway streetlighting were replaced with LEDs; heating systems were upgraded; and solar panels were installed at the Department of Public Works yard, beach club, theatre and Village Hall. EV stations were also installed at the Parks and Recreation building at 380 Bay Avenue and behind the theatre.

Theatre work included lighting interior and exterior, weatherization, roof replacement, temperature control upgrades, and rooftop unit replacement, as well as water conservation upgrades. Solar panels were also installed on buildings throughout the village.

The goal of the project, according to Fitzsimmons, was to improve the safety, security, and comfort of environments, reduce utility and operational costs, address deferred maintenance costs, leverage utility incentives and rebates, modernize systems, and define and support renewable energy.