New solar array at Paseo Verde Library doubles as learning tool


Just in time for summer, Henderson Libraries recently completed the construction of solar panels to become more energy-efficient.

“With summer just around the corner, the Paseo Verde Library stands to see significant cost savings thanks to the solar array,” said Matt Hortt, who led the project.

Constructed at the Paseo Verde Library, 280 S. Green Valley Parkway, the project features 100-kilowatt photovoltaic solar panels.

Hortt, also the head of adult services at the Gibson Library, said the project was funded partly by the NV Energy Renewable Generations Reservation Notice, which provides resources and incentives for customers who choose more sustainable approaches.

Discussion for the array began in 2012, but it wasn’t until 2013 that the library district put forth an application. Later that year, Henderson Libraries was informed it was awarded the maximum eligible incentive payment of $279,972 to go toward constructing a solar array. The Henderson Libraries Foundation provided an additional $10,000 for construction costs.

“This wouldn’t have been possible without those funds,” Hortt said.

The solar array was completed at the end of May. The project is estimated to save $13,000 per year in energy usage.

“People sometimes think that the government can be wasteful,” Hortt said, adding that he hopes this can be a small example of using resources judiciously.

“The one thing the library is trying to do is be the best steward of public funds,” he added.

Hortt said the money saved potentially could provide more resources for the library district.

“Instead of having that money go toward costly air conditioning bills, we can instead make the library experience that much better for everyone with new books, updated programs and enhanced services, all the while making taxpayer money go much further,” he added.

As much as it’s about saving money, it’s also about being more environmentally friendly.

“I think this serves as a reminder of what our future demands of us — environmental stewardship and an effort to live sustainably.”

Mark McGinty, a member of the Henderson Libraries Foundation board, said this isn’t the first facility in Las Vegas or Henderson to add environmentally friendly amenities.

“It’s been a trend across the valley,” he said. “Clark County School District has been doing it for years.”

McGinty said this also serves another purpose.

“The library is a place where people can learn,” he said. “Why not make the building a learning tool, too?”

Henderson Libraries is planning to have a public display component, which is expected to show the energy production and savings generated by the system.

Hortt said Henderson Libraries would be open to future ideas at other locations depending if the funds are available.

For more information, visit mypubliclibrary.com.

Contact Henderson View reporter Michael Lyle at mlyle@viewnews.com or 702-387-5201.

 

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