Lehigh University has begun construction on a 20-acre solar farm that will bring 7,400 photovoltaic panels to the school’s Murray H. Goodman campus in Bethlehem.
The Morning Call reports that the project has been designed to supply 100% of the electricity needs of the Goodman campus, which is home to the university’s athletic facilities.
Construction began late last year and is expected to wrap up this fall.
The Bethlehem Planning Commission approved the project last year over the objections of several residents of a condominium complex that overlooks the solar farm’s location.
Opponents contended that the solar panels would cause glare to reflect into their homes and diminish their property values.
Representatives for the university maintained that a “glare analysis” found that glare would not be a significant hazard. Lehigh is constructing a berm, or raised barrier of land, with trees on the border between the two properties.
The project is a collaboration between Lehigh and EDF Renewables, a sustainable energy company.
“By investing in clean energy and working to mitigate climate change, Lehigh is making a difference on campus, in the local community, and the world,” said Audrey McSain, Lehigh University’s sustainability director.