Plano solar energy complex developers reduce size of project to 1,680 acres

After discussions with Plano residents and city officials, the developers of a massive solar energy complex have decided to downsize the project.

Plano Skies Energy Center, LLC was initially proposing an over 2,000-acre complex in Kendall County just north of Plano, but has cut the size of the project by over 350 acres, to approximately 1,680 acres, according to a statement issued by the firm.

The land west of Little Rock Road will be removed from the project area based on drainage and engineering considerations.

The project boundaries near Little Rock Road were adjusted to move the fields further from the road. According to the statement, the majority of the project perimeter will be roughly one-half mile (or more) away from Little Rock Road.

The southernmost border of the complex has been moved north, further away from Sweetbriar Place and Rosewood Street, to create additional space between the complex and existing homes on those streets.

Developers say the complex with its solar panels has the potential to generate 100-250 megawatts of electricity over its expected 35-year operating life, enough to power 20,000-60,000 average Illinois households and generate as much as $30 million in tax revenue.

The majority of the complex is in unincorporated Kendall County, but a portion of it lies within Plano’s corporate limits.

Mayor Mike Rennels said previously that he would like to see the entire project site be annexed into the city instead of the city de-annex its current portion of the site and have the project developed in unincorporated Kendall County.

The project has yet to come before Plano City Council, but developers hosted an open house June 30 to get community feedback on the project.

For more information, and to see the updated project map, visit Plano Skies’ website.