Stracker Solar designed project earns $1M renewable energy grant for the City of Ashland

The Oregon Department of Energy has awarded $940,000 in funds for an energy resilience project Stracker Solar designed for the City of Ashland. The installation will consist of a 75-kW elevated dual-axis Stracker system along with a battery system to form a microgrid for the City Service Center.

Stracker Solar is pleased to announce that the Oregon Department of Energy has awarded $940,000 in funds to pay 100% of the project costs for an energy resilience project they designed for the City of Ashland. Awards were chosen based on project feasibility and strength, cost savings, economic development, and equity goals such as environmental justice.

The proposed community resilience project will be built at the City Service Center where the Police and Electric Departments as well as city vehicle fueling and charging stations are located. The installation will consist of a 75-kW elevated dual-axis Stracker system along with a new Lithium-battery system to form a microgrid for the site. The installation will produce 170,000 kWh electricity annually and support continued operation of essential services for the Electric Department and Ashland Fiber Network building, as well as continued fueling of city vehicles (which include ambulance and fire trucks), in the event of power grid failures. The project will also provide the City’s expanding electric vehicle fleet its first 480V Level 3 Electric Vehicle Charging Stations and will include provisions to allow the electric vehicle batteries to be used for additional electricity storage in the future. The project also includes social equity elements that helped gain the grant award.

“This exciting solar energy project, fully funded by the Oregon DOE and implemented by Stracker Solar, will help establish the City of Ashland as a leader in solar technology and energy security,” said Allen Gilstrap, Stracker Solar CEO. “This initiative is a demonstration of healthy energy resilience for the community as well as a catalyst for Stracker Solar’s national expansion plans.”

“The City of Ashland is gratified to be part of this forward-thinking project which will add resilience to our city’s emergency response”, says Julie Akins, Mayor of Ashland. “We congratulate Stracker Solar on the successful culmination of their hard work to move this forward with the Department of Energy. We look forward to this partnership and future projects with an eye toward sustainable development and resilience.”

The City Council was pleased to learn of the Community Renewable Energy Program grant and its positive impacts to the community. Members of the council worked with the engineers at Stracker Solar and city staff from the Public Works and Electrical departments before choosing the City Service Center site for the project.

“Kudos to the City Council and the Mayor for their foresight in helping us garner the funds for this high-profile solar resilience project for city emergency services, at no cost to the city” says Jeff Sharpe of Stracker Solar who is lead engineer for the project. “Between this grant and the one awarded to Southern Oregon University, the city has quickly procured almost 2 million dollars from the first round of the Community Renewable Energy Grant program to advance sustainable energy for Ashland.”

The City of Ashland is expected to quickly accept the grant to allow Stracker Solar to finalize the project design. The project’s elevated solar trackers will be manufactured at the company’s local fabrication facility on Jefferson Ave (Oak Street Tank and Steel). The installation is expected to be completed in early 2023.

About Stracker Solar:

– Stracker Solar, headquartered in Ashland, Oregon, has been manufacturing, selling, and installing state-of-the-art elevated dual-axis solar trackers since 2017.

– Strackers are the most robust, highest efficiency solar power systems available, generating up to 70% more solar energy each year than same-sized fixed rooftop, carport, or ground-mount systems. This efficiency translates to a 55%-65% lower carbon footprint as well.

– Stracker’s 20′ pole-mounting allows continued use of the grounds below, which makes the system ideally suited for parking lots, agricultural operations, school yards, community solar projects, and more.

– The Stracker solar system was developed and is manufactured in Ashland, Oregon. Stracker systems have been installed across a range of northern California and southern Oregon climates and are documenting unparalleled performance.

– Strackers are patent-pending and carry the valued UL 3703 certification. Stracker Solar is currently enlisting EPC Partners and regional fabrication facilities as it embarks on a national expansion campaign.

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