2022 Solar - 4.36 MW solar on six City sites

BHS Historic SolarSummary

The City of Beverly has partnered Kearsarge Energy to develop, construct, own, and operate 4.36 MW solar photovoltaic arrays across seven City properties in 2022-2023, providing the City with renewable energy credits equivalent to offset approximately half of City's electricity consumption. Construction at the below sites will begin in late June 2022.

Construction information

  • Beverly High School - canopy and ground-mount: Two-page factsheet 
    • Includes replacement of 1981 historic solar array (right image)
  • Beverly Middle School - rooftop and canopyTwo-page factsheet 
  • 10 & 11 Pond Street parking lot - canopyTwo-page factsheet  
    • Check here for the latest information on construction! Updated February 7, 2023.
      • June 16: Fencing is delivered to Lower 11 Pond Lot and 15 spaces at 10 Pond St. Lot
      • June 17: Equipment will be delivered to Lower 11 Pond Lot and 15 spaces at 10 Pond St. Lot. 10 Pond St. parking spaces will be released in the morning. 
      • June 20: 
        • Foundation construction at 10 Pond St. from Monday (6/20) to Wednesday (6/22). Parking released as work progresses. 
        • The exits will temporarily be two-way during this time. If you currently use this lot, please encourage your staff to park in the Family Dollar Lot on Federal Street (one block over). There will still be 43 spaces available in the Pond lot, especially along the Chapman Street exit.
        • Surveying will take place early in the morning at 11 Pond St. and will involve spot closures. 
      • June 22: Foundation construction continues at 10 Pond St. and begins at 11 Pond St. Construction was paused for the weekend and will resume on Tuesday (6/28) and Wednesday (6/29). Parking will be released as work progresses.  
      • June 28: 10 Pond Street Lot is fully re-opened
      • June 29: 11 Pond Street Lot foundations will be completed. 
      • August 30 - Sept. 5: Canopy preparation removes 16 spaces at 10 Pond St. and 8 additional spaces at Lower 11 Pond.
      • Sept. 6-9: Electrical work removes ~11 spaces at 10 Pond St. Lower 11 Pond remains closed.
      • Mid-September: Canopy structures are built at 10 Pond St. (~7 days) then 11 Pond St. (~14 days). Electrical work at 10 Pond St. (~10 days) then 11 Pond St. (~10 days). 
      • October: Spot closures will block 4-8 spaces at a time. Project will be complete by the end of the month.
      • NEW Temporary Public Parking: The City Hall Lot (33 spaces) is available for the general public on weekends.
      • November: Lighting will be strung under the canopy. 
      • First Quarter 2023: Project will be connected to the grid 
  • Beverly Council on Aging - rooftop: Constructed in Fall 2022
  • City Hall - rooftop: Constructed in Fall 2022
    City Hall solar

June 2022 Press Release 

The City of Beverly is taking great strides toward our community-developed climate goals this summer, with the installation of 4.36 megawatts of new solar energy generation across six City-owned sites. The new solar program builds on the City’s existing solar portfolio, providing renewable energy credits that will offset nearly all municipal electricity consumption. 

“We looked at all City sites for opportunities to install solar panels and cut greenhouse gas emissions to ensure our children a bright and healthy future,” said Beverly Mayor Michael P. Cahill. "This project meaningfully reduces our carbon footprint, contributes clean energy to the electric grid, and saves the City money on electricity."

In 2019, the City of Beverly assembled a six-site project awarded to Kearsarge Energy, LLC through a competitive procurement process. Kearsarge Energy is the City’s partner to develop, construct, own, and operate the 4.36 MW solar photovoltaic arrays at the following sites:  

  • Beverly High School – parking canopy and ground-mount
  • Beverly Middle School - rooftop and parking canopy   
  • 10 & 11 Pond Street parking lots - parking canopy
  • City Hall - rooftop
  • Beverly Council on Aging – rooftop
  • Beverly Police Station – rooftop and parking canopy (as part of a separate project)

In 1981, Beverly High School was one of eight sites in the United States that then-President Carter chose for an experimental solar panel installation. Today it is the last operational photovoltaic research site from that era. One row of solar panels from the historic hillside solar array will be kept to demonstrate the advancement of solar technology, presenting opportunities for renewable energy education to Beverly students.

This program enables the City to meet one of our energy goals from the Beverly and Salem Resilient Together climate action plan, for regional clean energy to supply 100% of municipal asset operations by 2030. The City will reach this goal ahead of schedule using renewable energy credits generated from City-owned sites. As the City continues our path toward decarbonization, municipal buildings will continue to be electrified, which will increase our electricity demand and call for additional renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. 

In 2013, A 2.6 MW solar array was built near the Beverly Regional Airport. In 2021, a 4.9 MW ground-mounted community solar project was completed over a capped landfill on Otis Road, providing energy credits to the City of Beverly and 100 Beverly homes. 

The solar program is one of several municipal decarbonization efforts, including vehicle fleet electrification and the newly constructed geothermal-powered police station, as well as a new community-wide energy efficiency campaign called the Beverly and Salem Energy Challenge

The program was developed in close partnership with the Department of Public Services and Mayor’s Office, and has received approvals by the Planning Board, Conservation Commission, School Committee, and City Council. In March 2022, the City Council voted unanimously to approve the lease, Payment In Lieu of Taxes agreement, and solar power services agreement. The City of Beverly will receive over $1.1 million in revenue over the 20-year term, as well as electricity cost savings of approximately $937,000. The lease term is twenty years with a five-year renewal term by mutual agreement. The project will avoid carbon dioxide emissions equivalent to over 390,000 gallons of gasoline annually. 

Construction at the 10 & 11 Pond Street parking lots, Beverly Middle School, and Beverly High School will begin in late June 2022. Later in the year, rooftop solar arrays will be installed at City Hall and the Council on Aging and, on a separate timeline, rooftop solar and a parking canopy will be constructed at the new police station. 

More information