Construction of renewable energy project at St Ives park and ride starts

The park and ride site in Meadow Lane, St Ives. Picture: GOOGLE

The park and ride site in Meadow Lane, St Ives. Picture: GOOGLE - Credit: Archant

Construction has started at St Ives park and ride on an innovative renewable energy project to install 1,800 solar panels, battery storage and EV charge points.

This forms part of Cambridgeshire County Council's (CCC) £4 million micro-grid project, part-funded by the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) through the European Regional Development Fund.

The project will generate and store solar electricity, power EV charge points and supply electricity to companies close to the site, which will help build resilience for local energy supplies and reduce carbon emissions over the next three decades.

Councillor Lorna Dupre, chair of the county council’s environment and green investment committee, said: “We are fully committed to tackling the climate emergency, and this innovative project is another example of the range of work we are undertaking to meet the challenge.

"I am delighted that the scheme has taken another important step forward, and I’m excited to see it take shape over the coming months.  

“Generating electricity locally to supply energy to nearby businesses is really important as the UK transforms its reliance on fossil fuels to clean energy supplies.

"We will be working with at least 40 local businesses to share learning and knowledge on a range of different low-carbon technologies to develop the supply chain capacity and speed up the transition to tackle climate change.”

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Bouygues E&S Solutions, the council's delivery partner, has designed and is constructing the project.

Preparation has already taken place, cordoning off areas of the car park and construction is expected to take about a year to complete. The park and ride will remain open throughout.

Once installed, the panels will generate 28Gwh of clean electricity over the 30-year life of the project, which will provide power for the site and nearby businesses.

It will also result in a reduction of 14,000 tonnes of carbon emissions over its lifetime, making it an important contributor to helping Cambridgeshire reach its goal of net zero by 2045.

A business support programme is running alongside to learn from the project and inform SMEs on key parts of the scheme to build knowledge, skills and capacity in the low carbon sector.