Solar Power Shining Brighter in SW Florida Region


SARASOTA, FLORIDA, November 29th, 2016 – Green home lovers, take note. Local sources of clean energy are continuing to expand and likely to further stimulate market interest in select real estate for sale in Manatee, Sarasota, and Charlotte counties.

This December, Florida Power & Light Co. (FPL) is expected to commission its Manatee Solar Energy Center just about 10 months after its groundbreaking. This facility is located just a short distance north of the Foxbrook residential community, a prime destination for Parrish homes for sale with acre-sized lots.

The Manatee power plant occupies a 762-acre site off John Corbett Road, thereby also putting it in close proximity to homes for sale in Parrish at the neighborhoods of Gamble Creek. This new FPL facility consists of 338,000 solar panels, enough to generate a total capacity of 74.5 megawatts.

Two More for the Clean Energy Road

Solar Power Shining Brighter in SW Florida Region

The groundbreaking rites of the Manatee power plant in February this year likewise signaled the start of two other similar projects in the Southwest Florida region. One of these is the FPL Babcock Ranch Solar Energy Center which is also nearly complete on 440 acres in Charlotte County. This facility is part of the county’s newest master development, Babcock Ranch, touted as the first solar-powered city and a looming major destination for Charlotte homes for sale.

The other new plant in the region is the FPL Citrus Solar Energy Center, which is rising on 841 acres in DeSoto County. Close to the site of FPL’s first large-scale solar power plant, this facility will also have 74.5 megawatts of solar capacity like its peers in Babcock Ranch and Parrish.

By end-2016, FPL hopes to triple its current solar capacity of about 110 megawatts. Already, its three new plants in the region will combine for a total of over 225 megawatts of additional solar capacity by year-end.

Small Solar Showcases

The power company is also planning to put up several commercial-scale solar research installations and community-based, small-scale solar arrays for added power capacity and promotion of green energy. In Palmetto, the city commission has already conceptually approved an FPL proposal to build a solar energy power plant at the Estuary Preserve, an award-winning park just across of high-end Palmetto homes for sale at Riviera Dunes.

The draft contract for this solar energy power plant calls for the construction of a 40-foot wide and 90-foot long solar-panel canopy over an existing shell rock parking lot at the park’s northernmost entrance. The energy collected here will power the park’s security lights and those for a planned kayak storage facility at the Estuary Preserve.

Down south in Venice, a similar FPL solar energy showcase would have been completed this November at the parking lot of the city’s Community Center. This project, located just west of Venice homes for sale at the neighborhoods of Venezia Park, however, hit a snag because of its contractor’s error of building the canopy at the wrong spot.

Called Solar Now, this structure would have been the first of its kind in the Florida west coast. It can generate enough energy to supply power of 50 classrooms a year, in addition to providing shade for 20 parking spaces. FPL is now seeking a site outside Venice for its relocation as the power company pushes forward to promote solar energy use in the region.