With the first phase of the innovative solar carport at Lockheed Martin’s Mission Systems and Training facility in Oldsmar, Florida completed and phase two construction now underway, Florida’s largest private, non-utility-owned solar array is quickly becoming a landmark. The team is preparing for an official ribbon cutting and launch of the project October 2015.

Advanced Roofing is also resurfacing the facility’s entire 6.65-acre parking lot while Lockheed Martin operations remain in full swing. More than 250 Lockheed Martin employees’ vehicles are being shaded under the two completed, 400-foot-long carport sections. According to Clint Sockman, vice president of Advanced Roofing and AGT, phase one’s 3,880 Hanwha SolarOne S-series modules will begin converting sunlight to energy once transformers are installed later this summer.

“The carport’s scope and capacity make it a great demonstration of solar energy’s potential to improve sustainability for Florida’s private sector,” Sockman said. “It’s an exciting, fast-track project that draws on our decades of experience handling complex projects in operational businesses, governmental and healthcare environments.”

General contractor Advanced Roofing and sister company Advanced Green Technologies (AGT) marked the midway construction milestone of the 2.26 megawatt solar carport in Oldsmar earlier this month, with the entire project on track for completion in October 2015. AGT is constructing and installing Lockheed Martin’s 151,400-square-foot solar carport, which is expected to produce an estimated 3.3 million kilowatt hours of electricity per year when completed, cutting energy purchases for the facility by up to 60 percent.

Bringing an added “green” dimension to the environmentally friendly construction project, Lockheed Martin is recycling the inch-deep soil being removed from the entire parking lot, by donating it for use at the City of Oldsmar’s new BMX Supercross facility being built nearby. “This is another example of the partnership between the City of Oldsmar and Lockheed Martin and the shared value of environmental stewardship,” stated Oldsmar Mayor Doug Bevis.

“At Lockheed Martin, we look for sustainable solutions with multiple benefits, and the solar carport will deliver long-term, on several fronts,” said Curt Engel, Lockheed Martin Oldsmar Facility General Manager. “Drawing on renewable power will reduce our carbon footprint while cutting energy costs significantly. We’re delighted our employees will benefit from shaded parking – and pleased that the city will re-use material from our site in creating a unique recreational asset for the community.”

Derick Lila
Derick is a Clark University graduate—and Fulbright alumni with a Master's Degree in Environmental Science, and Policy. He has over a decade of solar industry research, marketing, and content strategy experience.

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