Daytona International Speedway has announced plans to add a ‘commercial-scale’ distributed solar power installation, to complement the ongoing US$400m Daytona Rising redevelopment project.
The Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) has been chosen as a partner on the project, which when completed will be one of the five largest solar installations at a U.S. professional sports venue.
The plan comprises the installation of more than 5,000 solar panels on multiple canopy-like structures (below) that will offer areas of shade for race fans while generating zero-emissions energy. The solar panels will be located outside the frontstretch, in the Sprint Fanzone and in one of the Speedway’s parking lots. The electricity generated will help power the Speedway’s operations and FPL’s 4.7 million customers via the grid.
The project’s total generating capacity is expected to be approximately 1.7 megawatts, making it one of the largest distributed solar installations in Florida.
The clean energy generated by the installation will prevent the emission of an estimated 2,200 metric tons of carbon dioxide each year – equivalent to an average vehicle driving 2,000,000 laps around Daytona International Speedway.
FPL plans to begin construction on the solar installation by this fall, with the goal of connecting it to the grid by the end of the year. The installation will include high-tech data-gathering equipment that will provide FPL with real-time and long-term data to help the company continue incorporating more solar power into the grid in the future.