Woodlawn Fire Station goes solar
Fairfax County officials conducted a ceremonial flipping of the switch at Woodlawn Fire and Rescue Station #24, Sept. 27 to celebrate the completion of rooftop solar installations at both Woodlawn and Reston Fire Stations. The solar projects are the largest installations to date on county buildings, according to the Office of Environmental and Energy Coordination, and the first to use an energy savings contract.
Woodlawn’s new 50 kW solar photovoltaic array, installed by Mountain View Solar, will provide onsite power generation and enable the facility to become Fairfax County’s first LEED Platinum building — the highest level of sustainability in design and construction. The solar array will provide about 15% of the electricity needed for the building and save the county about $6,400 in the first year, according to a poster displayed at the station.
Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chair Jeff McKay, who joined Mount Vernon District Supervisor Dan Storck in flipping the switch, said the journey to achieving the county’s solar milestone had been challenging but was easily “the right thing to do” for the planet, Fairfax County and the first responders working at the station.
“By putting solar panels on top of this building and on top of a fire station in Reston … we’re showing that you can save money … taxpayer money in making this investment,” said McKay. He added that the county wanted to “lead by example” in the race against climate change and “showcase the art of the possible” at the new Woodlawn station, which held its grand opening in early 2022.
Describing the facility as “future and state-of-the-art for Fairfax County,” Storck said the Woodlawn station will serve as a model for others being designed and built for energy efficiency and clean energy usage. Both those components are necessary for the county to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2040, said Storck.
“We’re on a way to a brighter future and hopefully a healthier future for all of us,” he said.