panels

COURTESY PHOTO/DEF

Aerial picture taken on Sept. 11 depicts the progress of the solar panels at the Duke Energy Florida solar plant north of Lake Placid.

By KIM LEATHERMAN

Staff Writer

LAKE PLACID — Progress is being made at the solar farm. Motorists on U.S. 27 can see the solar panels being attached to the posts at the site that Duke Energy Florida is leasing. The visible panels are just a snapshot of the 380 acres that will be paneled, ostensibly by December.

“Duke Energy Florida (DEF) anticipates the Lake Placid Solar Power Plant in Highlands County, Fla. will be serving customers in December 2019,” Ana Gibbs, DEF spokeswoman, said. “Once operational, the facility will be 45 megawatts (MWs) in size, which is enough to power more than 12,000 homes at peak production.”

The project, which began in May, seems to be on target for the December goal. Nearly half of the panels were installed as of Friday. According to Gibbs, 87,000 of the 180,000 panels have been installed.

The 180,000 panels will be spread across 380 acres. The land being used for the solar farm is north of the cemetery and to the east of U.S. 27 (across from Tomoka Heights and the American Legion).

Gibbs said the 45-megawatt (MW) plant will consist of tracking solar panels. The solar power plant is expected to be in service in December 2019 and will be owned, operated and maintained by DEF.

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