Project Complete!

posted Feb 12, 2011, 11:07 PM by todd farris

Thank you for making Solarize Southwest a success! This project reached out to over 700 neighbors and 168 installed over 500kw of energy!

Where we are so far

posted Sep 2, 2010, 5:31 AM by todd farris   [ updated Sep 2, 2010, 5:34 AM ]

Contracts signed:  160,

Installs completed by 8/31/10:  75,

KW installed:  200,

KW expected:  500    

GOOOOO Southwest Portland Neighbors!

Updates on the process

posted Sep 2, 2010, 5:27 AM by todd farris   [ updated Sep 2, 2010, 5:38 AM ]

For those of you who have been participating in the project, we know it has been a bit of a bumpy road. We wanted to share a little of what has been happening behind the scenes. So following are some items from Mr. Sun Solar, the Solarize Southwest contractor:

1)  We were unable to order product until we had sold 200 kW.  This took a couple of months.  For those who signed up in May, it's been a long time coming.

2) To meet the October 31st deadline we had to hire and train 3 new crews in addition to our very experienced PV crew.  We were unwilling to compromise on quality of installations.  We spent over a month training the new crews which are now operating independently.  We went from 10 installations per month in June to 40 in August.  We can maintain 40 installs per month for the rest of the way.

3) Historically there has been anxiety from all solar customers once summer arrives.  Every day the sun is out and their system is not installed becomes an agitation.   150 agitated customers is difficult to deal with, and by mid-summer the calls were nearly overwhelming.  We did our best but I'm sure there are quite a few who remain dissatisfied and resent that the summer has come and gone without solar modules on their roof.

4) Anxiety became acute when the Oregon Department of Energy announced new regulations and an impossible timeline to "grandfather" systems under the preferred program.    Within a week ODOE relaxed their position making proposed changes  moot to all SSWP participants. 

5)  We hope people will remember the big picture:  in the end they will have gotten a quality product and a quality installation at an amazingly low price with the highest incentives we're likely to ever see, AND, delivered within the timeline of the SSWP RFP 

Thank you everyone for your patience!

RETC Changes - Updates

posted Jul 30, 2010, 7:35 PM by todd farris   [ updated Jul 30, 2010, 7:46 PM ]

On July first, the Oregon Department of Energy implemented some changes to the RETC which would have dramatically changed the costs for people with signed contracts. Thanks to SWNI staff Leonard and Sylvia, Lee - from the city of Portland, Solarize Volunteer "Mac" and other leaders of solarize projects for sending a strong response to the Oregon Department of Energy. Thanks also to the Oregon Department of Energy who listened to our concerns and responded with a very reasonable timeline. As of July 30th, ODOE is adopting a new rule giving everyone more time to use the current Oregon solar tax credit. Contracts need to be signed by August 13. Installations need to be complete by December 31. Permitting can even go out to January 15, 2011. See the official rules at 

691 sign ups! 300+ KW installed - Sign Up Period is Closed

posted Jun 15, 2010, 10:23 PM by todd farris   [ updated Jun 16, 2010, 7:15 PM ]

Today Solarize Southwest is ending the sign up period. 691 people expressed interest in learning more about solar and many of those are installing solar PV systems. Participants have committed to installing over 300KW productive capacity.

600 hundred Sign Ups

posted May 19, 2010, 6:38 PM by todd farris

Over  600 people have expressed and interest in the initiative. People have committed to and paid for over 130 Kilowatts of Solar installations! We hope to reach 300 kilowatts of installs! Help us reach our goal! If you have the solar exposure, a 2 kw system can be VERY affordable! If you are not sure if your house would be a good site - Sign up! We will send someone out to do a free site evaluation and consultation!

Deadline Extended to June 15th!

posted May 16, 2010, 7:58 AM by todd farris

While we have over 550 people sign-up as interested in Solarize Southwest, we have the capacity to do more and we want to make sure word is out! Keep spreading the word! People can now sign up as late as June 15th!

Solarworld is hiring 350 new factory workers!

posted May 6, 2010, 6:39 PM by todd farris

One of the side benefits of this project is to bring work to Oregon. There is little doubt that the tremendous increase in solar awareness inspired by the Solarize Portland initiatives has helped make this growth possible. Solarize Southwest has decided to use Solarworld panels because they are good and they are made locally, so we are helping directly too! Read the Oregonian article http://www.oregonlive.com/hillsboro/index.ssf/2010/05/solarworld_plans_to_add_350_hillsboro_jobs.html.

New Cost Estimator

posted May 3, 2010, 9:52 PM by todd farris

There have been many questions around costs. We have added a chart to estimate the possible costs around going solar. Costs depend on lots of factors, so the numbers are just estimates, but they can get you in the ball park. See our costs page for more details.

We've hit 500! YES! Keep spreading the word!

posted May 3, 2010, 9:51 PM by todd farris

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