A few days ago, LEGOLAND Florida celebrated Tampa Electric’s completion of a solar canopy over portions of the parking lot that’s now producing electricity (and shade) for guests. These solar panels can produce enough electricity to power more than 200 homes and enough shade for more than 600 cars. It’s Tampa Electric’s second large-scale photovoltaic (PV) array to be installed in the communities it serves, and its first large-scale array in Polk County.
Tampa Electric owns the PV array, and the electricity it produces goes to the grid, benefiting the company’s 730,000 customers, including LEGOLAND Florida Resort. The panels can generate enough electricity from the sun to power the resort’s 152-room LEGOLAND Hotel.
The new system joins a smaller PV installation already in the theme park. In 2014, the company installed some solar panels atop Imagination Zone, a large, indoor attraction filled with hands-on science and engineering-based activities for kids. So far, Tampa Electric has installed nine community-based solar PV arrays that offer the public an opportunity to see solar up close and to learn about the technology.
- Rated at 1.8 megawatts
- Consists of 5,225 345-watt solar panels supported by 211 steel columns
- Canopy contains more than 500,000 pounds of steel
- Covers more than 116,000 square feet
Here you are some photos of the area with the solar canopy when it was almost ready to open: