Author: Marika Woods-Frankenstein | WNY Sustainable Energy Association Program Committee Chair
Come to the Solar Tour Kick Off event at the Innovation Center, 640 Ellicott Street, in downtown Buffalo at 10 a.m this Saturday, October 4th to get a head start on the 16th Annual Solar Tour of Homes and Green Buildings! The Innovation Center was the first adaptive reuse LEED-certified core and shell project in New York State outside of New York City. The Innovation Center’s roof mounted photo voltaic solar panels help power the building with a grant from New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). The IC has many Green design elements that include LED lighting, Solar Trees, Solar walkway lighting, sewer water diverting bioswales and 23 electric car charging stations! Our highlighted tour site this year will be the FedEx Building whose solar installer is Montante Solar at the Riverview Solar Technology Park in Tonawanda. The 150 Kilowatt Photo Voltaic Solar Array features state-of-the art integrated traditional solar and translucent solar panels!
The Solar Tour of Homes and Green Buildings is a free, self-guided tour that includes local homes and businesses that have implemented energy efficient measures and clean renewable energy technology such as Solar,and Geothermal systems. The Solar Tour is part of a National Solar Tour which is sponsored by the American Solar Energy Society and affiliated with the Northeastern Renewable Energy Association. The Solar Tour list of participating companies and organizations includes Montante Solar, Solar Liberty, Buffalo Geothermal Heating, the UB Solar Decathlon Team, PUSH Buffalo’s Netzero Home, Natale Builders, Tapestry Charter High School, Junior Solar Sprint,The UB Honors College,Tifft Nature Preserve, Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve and Environmental Education Center,the Solar Cafe at the Collegiate Village,the Green Roof at the NFTA Bus Shelter and the UB Solar Strand.
The UB Solar Decathlon Team will present their renderings of GroW House at the Solar Tour Kick Off event. There will be Green raffles from environmentally focused businesses and organizations such as Blue Sky Design Supply,Buffalo CarShare,Go Bike Buffalo,Buffalo Bikeshare,the Solar Cafe at the Collegiate Village and Buffalo Solar Jars. Sign the kids up for Junior Solar Sprint at the Kick Off event and start your Solar Tour at the Innovation Center where energy efficiency and renewable energy technology merge in an adaptively reused building. The Solar Tour runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tour times may vary at many of the sites and some tours are by appointment only. The tour is free, self-guided and open to the public. Learn how to decrease your reliance on fossil fuel at the Solar Tour Kick Off event! Don’t miss this opportunity to learn more about reducing energy consumption through energy efficiency and discover the viability of clean renewable energy technology that is our future in Western New York and beyond! For a complete list of the WNYSEA’s 2014 Solar Tour and Green Building sites please visit: www.wnysea.com and www.facebook.com/wnysea.
Lead image: FedEx Integrated Solar Array at the Montante Solar Riverview Solar Technology Park in Tonawanda. Photo credit: WNY Sustainable Energy Association – WNYSEA