Neighborhood Sun


COMMUNITY SOLAR FARMS

 Welcome to the Neighborhood!


Neighborhood Sun's community solar subscribers have saved over $2 Million on their electricity bills thanks to the clean, local energy. 
Reserve your share of a solar farm in your community to start saving on each monthly electricity bill.
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SHARES AVAILABLE
Local Community Members Served by This Project:
102
General Subscriber Savings:
10% Discount
Income-Qualified Subscriber Savings:
20% Discount for Income-Qualified Subscribers
Annual Solar Energy Generated:
2,034,000 kWh
Annual CO2-equivalent Prevented:
1,308 metric tons

Free Rein Solar Farm

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Located in
Gaitherbsurg, Maryland
Utility Provider
Potomac Electric Power Co (Pepco)
Developed By
Free Rein
Currently
under construction

Get to Know Your Solar Farm!

Subscriber Benefits

Free Rein Solar Farm consists of 2,660 solar panels on land that was previously used as a grazing pasture for horses. At least 30% of the solar energy generated by this community solar farm is reserved for low- and moderate-income households at an increased discount. Households that subscribe to Free Rein Horse and Community Solar Farm can enjoy 10% savings on energy costs, with 20% discounts available to income-qualified residents.

Social and Environmental Impact Details

Due to the poor soil conditions and topography of the site, it’s unsuitable for agriculture but ideal for pollinator-friendly plants, ensuring that this community solar farm meets Montgomery County’s agrivoltaics standard for solar development. The construction of this community solar farm involves new plantings of native species to cover 1.5 acres in trees and shrubs. As a result of multiple meetings held with neighbors to provide information and understand concerns, voluntary vegetative screenings and buffers were added to the site to protect nearby wetlands and streams. The solar panels will cover 100% of the horse farm’s electricity needs and provide extra income for the farm to cover its expenses while generating carbon-free electricity for Maryland residents. The solar project’s layout is designed to follow the natural contours of the site to minimize soil disturbance. Two bioretention basins will capture and filter stormwater, and the project will be subject to permit conditions issued by the County and Maryland Department of the Environment. Rack supports will be directly driven into the ground and not require concrete to reduce negative impacts during construction. The solar panels were manufactured in Vietnam and certified to comply with US trade and material sourcing rules.  At the end of their 25+ years of operation, the glass and metal components will be removed from the site and recycled while the land will be returned to its natural state. 

Construction Timeline

Construction is set to begin in late April and is expected to produce electricity by mid-August. Solar panels and racking steel are scheduled to be delivered to the site in May. The Project has been under development for almost 3 years as it secured County and State permits and approvals.