The company has signed an easement agreement with the property owner and will move forward with system design. The largest developer of solar energy projects in the state, DTE Energy hopes to obtain city approvals and construct the facility by summer 2016.
"Representatives of the City of Ypsilanti and DTE Energy have been working for several years to bring this project to the city," said City Manager Ralph A. Lange. "We are thrilled that this project will produce clean solar power for the residents of Ypsilanti and neighboring communities."
The new facility will comprise about 2,800 solar panels and have capacity to generate approximately 800 kilowatts of electricity – enough to power around 150 homes.
DTE Energy will construct, operate and maintain the solar system for 20 years.
"Large-scale projects such as the proposed Ypsilanti facility add to our solar energy capacity which is increasingly important as we transition to a cleaner, greener generation fleet," said Irene Dimitry, DTE Energy's vice president of Business & Development.
The project is part of DTE Energy SolarCurrents, a pilot program launched in 2009. DTE Energy has installed nearly 10 megawatts of solar energy across 22 sites in Southeastern Michigan including projects at Ford Motor Co. headquarters in Dearborn and Monroe Community College in Monroe.
The company also is constructing a 1.1-megawatt array at Domino's Farms near Ann Arbor and a 750-kilowatt installation in Romulus. In addition, several other solar energy projects are in development.
Dimitry added that the solar projects have helped DTE Energy meet a state mandate requiring electric utilities to supply 10 percent of their electricity from renewable energy sources by 2015.
DTE Energy's entire renewable energy portfolio including wind and biomass is now capable of generating nearly 1,000 megawatts of electricity, enough to power 400,000 homes. The portfolio includes facilities owned and operated by DTE Energy, along with contracts to purchase power from facilities owned and operated by third-party developers in Michigan.