First net-zero municipal building in New York State!

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Skaneateles Village Hall in Skaneateles, NY, goes solar with 54kW PV solar rooftop array. The Village Hall is projected to produce more energy than it consumes, making it the first net-zero municipal building in New York State.

The Skaneateles Village Hall in Skaneateles, NY has achieved a zero net energy  (ZNE) status, producing more energy than it consumes. The Village Hall is the first ZNE municipal building in New York. The energy consumption reduction and the creation of the first municipal net-zero public building in New York State was accomplished with a 54kW PV rooftop installation and other energy efficiency upgrades. The solar array consists of 220 Aleo Solar panels that will generate approximately 62,000kWh annually, resulting in the avoidance of 46 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions per year.

TAG Mechanical Systems, a Syracuse, NY-based mechanical contracting firm, installed the PV system for the Skaneateles Village Hall. Other building improvements that helped the building becoming ZNE included a new Geothermal HVAC system, complete building envelope renovation, and a lighting retrofit including LED lighting. The building will has an educational energy display in the lobby so visitors can see how the building is performing.

The Village of Skaneateles and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) announced the opening of the building last week. Formerly a vacant fire station, the repurposed building now houses village offices and a police station.

The project started over a year ago when Village officials partnered with the Central New York Regional Planning and Development Board (CNYRPDB) under its EPA-funded Climate Change Innovation Program. CNYRPDB is working with seven municipalities in Central New York to develop greenhouse gas inventories and develop climate action plans.

With an initial investment of $30,000 in EPA funding from the CNYRPDB and capital from the sale of the old Village Hall, officials saw the opportunity to turn the former fire station into a net-zero energy environmental showcase. NYSERDA provided a $546,000 grant toward the $1.5 million project through Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development initiative. 

Many Climate Change Innovation projects have provided significant savings and greenhouse gas reductions to municipalities, but the Skaneateles Village Hall is the first project that has achieved a net-zero energy status.

John B. Rhodes, President and CEO, NYSERDA, commented: “The Village of Skaneateles should be commended for its demonstrated leadership and for this dynamic net-zero energy building that can serve as a valuable model for other municipalities. Increasing energy efficiency across all sectors of New York’s economy remains a cornerstone of Governor Cuomo’s efforts in advancing the State’s clean-energy economy through public-private partnerships in every region of the State thereby ensuring a clean, affordable and sustainable energy future for all New Yorkers.”

“This project makes economic sense,” said Senator John A. DeFrancisco. “It will allow the Village of Skaneateles to significantly reduce its overall operating costs, while serving as a model of environmental stewardship.”