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EC subsidized housing apt. installing solar panels to save energy, environment

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - An Eau Claire building is getting an upgrade that will help save money and the environment.

The Eau Claire Housing Authority is installing solar panels on its largest building, the Park Tower, which will cut thousands of dollars in expenses and save energy.

The project that's been in the works for about two years is taking shape atop the eight-story subsidized apartment building.

“The insulation on the roof was soaked, so we had to replace the roof. So it was at that point where we kind of fast tracked the solar process,” Eau Claire Housing Authority Executive Director Keith Johnathan said.

He said using new solar panels to help create hot water is costing about $139,000, but the move will save about $3,700 dollars each year, offsetting half of their hot water demand.

“We've got finite resources. We're going through them, and we're depleting them, day by day. So I think being able to do this, and to know that this building will continue to function, I think is very positive step.”

“It is an investment. And we're hoping that it's one that pays off,” he said.

Johnathan said the project is funded through federal taxes and that the city could be looking at the project as an example for future opportunities. It's expected to be completed by the end of Feb.

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