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FRAMINGHAM – The contractor does not have time to install a solar canopy at the new Fuller Middle School nor at Brophy Elementary School before the first day of school on September 1.

“Due to timing of final contracts and limited parking at both locations, we will need to perform installations in accordance with school calendar and related access to the lots for the canopy work. It would be ideal to complete the installations all at once, but we will not have time before school opens for 2021-2022 year,” wrote Solect Energy Vice President Matt Shortsleeve to Framingham Public School District Buildings & Grounds Director Matt Torti and City of Framingham Sustainability Coordinator Shawn Luz yesterday, July 16.

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Solect Energy’s “intent is to complete the underground canopy foundations and storm drain work” by August 24, wrote Shortsleeve. “The
work is likely going to start in August and take 2-3 weeks. …We will appreciate your assistance in expediting the building permits for the project. The objective here is to allow for paving of the lot, then go away until we have sufficient time at the site to erect and complete the canopy. As you’re aware, lead times on steel delivery have been extended due to market conditions. In accordance with our cost control process and based on current installation schedule, we can not purchase canopy steel until our contracts are executed, and practically we would not have nearly enough time to commence construction with the extended lead times.”

Solect Energy Vice President said “we will return to complete other work for the project in spring and summer of 2022. Since it’s all one system, we will not have the ability to complete the interconnection until the canopies are fully constructed.”

The new Fuller Middle School, under construction, is set to open for the 2021-22 school year.

Demolition on the old Fuller Middle is set to take place this summer.

The Fuller Middle School solar canopy project could mean more than $530,000 in savings over the proposed 25-year agreement with Hopkinton-based Solect Energy, Luz told the 11-member Framingham City Council in a memo.

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In regards to the Brophy Elementary solar panel project, there is a hearing before the Framingham Planning Board scheduled for August 5.

“Our aim is to secure nonministerial permits for this project. We are working with Beta Engineering who performed site engineering
services at Brophy, and feel confident that the Planning board will find the proposal acceptable. We have performed a glare study due to the school being in a residential neighborhood, so as to be proactive anticipating any questions or concerns. We will not have access to this lot for the canopy work until school summer break 2022, and will have the project schedule and permits lined up in advance of that mobilization. That project will be completed in summer 2022,” wrote Shortsleeve.

Luz told the City Council the Brophy Elementary solar project could generate $380,000 in savings over a 25-year power purchase agreement.

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By editor

Susan Petroni is the former editor for SOURCE. She is the founder of the former news site, which as of May 1, 2023, is now a self-publishing community bulletin board. The website no longer has a journalist but a webmaster.