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Worcester Business Center Opens Solar Carport

Updated: Feb 9, 2023

The $6 million, 2.6 Megawatt Solar Carport Canopy celebrated at Worcester Business Center

WORCESTER, MA. –NOVEMBER 2, 2022 - Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito, Worcester Business Center Developer Charles ‘Chip’ Norton, Senator Michael Moore, other City of Worcester Elected Officials, National Grid and Representatives of Green Street Power Partners, LLC (GSPP) hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony today to celebrate the completed construction of a carport canopy solar array. Collecting the suns’ rays above the existing parking area at the Worcester Business Center, the $6 million, 2.6 Megawatt solar carport canopy is one of the largest private office park solar carport installations in Central Massachusetts. The Worcester Business Center has a 25-year lease agreement with Green Street Power Partners, Developer of the Carport.

“I am pleased to celebrate this new source of renewable energy for the residents and businesses of Central Massachusetts,” said Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “It’s projects like this that help pave the way for a more sustainable future for the people and the environment of the region and our Commonwealth.”

The 66 & 67 Millbrook Street complex in Worcester, MA encompasses 260,000 square-feet of functional office space throughout its 3 interconnected sections (North, Center and South Buildings) and is recognized as one of the largest first-class multi-tenanted suburban office buildings in Worcester. The Worcester Business Center is located strategically at the intersection of Interstates 190 and 290 within close proximity to downtown Worcester.

“We are delighted to host today’s ribbon cutting ceremony after months of planning and building,” said Norton. “We are pleased that we were able to find and work with our partners, solar developer Green Street Power Partners, and National Grid, to design and develop a 100% solar carport array in an office park setting providing our tenants with covered parking and an alternative technology amenity.”

The Worcester project is an affiliate of Green Street Power Partners, a national developer, financier, owner, and operator of solar energy systems benefiting businesses and communities across the country. The $6 million carport solar system is a series of structures covering approximately one-third of the existing parking area including the former location of the 17,000 square-foot annex building, an eyesore to the community, which was razed at the end of last year.

The transaction structure provided GSPP with access/use of the property to build and maintain the system. The generated electricity will be sold by the developer to National Grid. The Worcester site received the necessary approval last year through the State's SMART (Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target) program which offers financial and tax incentives necessary to make commercial renewable energy projects financially viable. Now complete, the Worcester Business Center solar carport array is one of the largest private office park installations in Central Massachusetts.

Senator Michael Moore presented Chip Norton with a Commonwealth of Massachusetts State Senate Official Citation extending their congratulations to the Worcester Business Center in recognition of the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony Celebrating The Grand Opening of the new Solar Carport in Worcester signed by the President of the Senate, Karen E. Spilka, attested by Clerk of the Senate, Michael D. Hurley and offered by State Senator Michael O. Moore.

This is Norton’s second large investment in renewable energy in Central Mass. In 2017-2018, Norton unveiled a $5.6 million Cogeneration Plant at his Southbridge Innovation Center in Southbridge, MA. That project transformed a traditional off-line electric power plant into a state-of-the-art cogeneration facility on the grounds of the former American Optical manufacturing plant.

*Attached photo: Credit Matt Wright Photography. For more images from Matt Wright to be used with credit, please find them here.

About Franklin Realty Advisors LLC

Franklin Realty Advisors LLC is a regional real estate development and advisory firm headquartered in Wellesley, Massachusetts with specific expertise in public/private partnerships, commercial development and commercial property management. Over the past few decades the managing directors and senior management of the firm and its affiliates have developed, acquired and/or managed over $750 million of real estate projects throughout the United States, including more than $200 million in office and mixed-use projects in Central Massachusetts. Some significant local projects include the $100 million Southbridge Innovation Center, $90 million Mercantile Center project in downtown Worcester, as well One and Two Chestnut Place in Worcester, The Worcester Business Center and 385 Grove Street in Worcester.

About Worcester Business Center (WBC)

Originally designed for manufacturing, the Worcester Business Center building was home to Thom McAn Shoe from 1965 to 1996 before its closure and redevelopment into the WBC. More recently, current ownership for the WBC has invested over $14.8 million in improvements over the past decade, including the transformation of more than 100,000 square-feet of existing warehouse space into office space. Occupying space at the Worcester Business Center are 3 of the largest office tenants in Worcester: UMass Memorial Health Care, an original tenant since the complex was redeveloped along with Elder Services and the Massachusetts Department of Revenue.

About Green Street Power Partners, LLC

Green Street Power Partners is a national developer, financier, owner, and operator of solar energy systems benefiting businesses and communities across the country. GSPP’s proven dependability, experience within the industry, and established portfolio of 162 MW of operational assets, underpin its success as one of the leading solar developers and owners in the country.

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