Real Salt Lake shines bright with new solar project

Written By Don Muret
(Getty Images)

Real Salt Lake is taking solar energy to a higher level at Rio Tinto Stadium.

The MLS team announced Tuesday it plans to install 6,414 solar panels for next season at its stadium property in suburban Salt Lake City.

MORE: Orlando City breaks ground on new stadium | Sports facilities transition to LED

The 2,020-watt kilowatt system is expected to offset 73 percent of the stadim's power needs, which would be the largest offset in major league sports, according to team officials.

Overall, it's the fourth-largest solar display in the majors. In Utah, the environmental impact of the new solar array is equal to removing 450 cars from state roadways.

Most of the panels, about 95 percent of the total installation, are tied to a new covered parking lot at the stadium. The balance of the panels will be placed on existing structure at the 7-year-old building.

The club partnered with Auric Solar for the project, a local company that launched its business in 2010 and has quickly become the largest solar provider in Utah, team officials said.

The project will "increase our power efficiency while hosting more than 50 events each year," said RSL owner Dell Loy Hansen. "The new solar covered parking structures will improve the quality of parking options for our 15,000 season-ticket holders."

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