First Solar Powered City in the U.S. is in the Works.

Florida to build the first 100%  solar powered city in the U.S., andwill be powered by the world’s largest photovoltaic plant.

The eco-city, called Babcock Ranch, is a joint venture between a real estate developer, Kitson & Partners, and Florida Power & Light, and will be located near Fort Myers, Florida.

Babcock Ranch will include almost 20,000 houses and 6 million square feet of mixed retail, office, and light industrial space, and have city-wide wireless internet and electric car charging stations throughout.

The city will be fully powered by solar during the day, and produce an excess of electricity that will be exported to the grid. The CEO of Kitson said the project will serve as a model to other communities and be a “living laboratory for companies, workers and families ready to reap the rewards of innovation.”

Florida Power & Light expects to break ground on the $400 million solar PV plant this year, pending regulatory approval. Construction of Babcock Ranch is slated for the summer of 2010.

The project’s cost is estimated at $2 billion, and is expected to create 20,000 jobs.

The horizon that is energy efficiency is not looking as out of reach as it has been thought to be.

cleantechnica.com Derek Markham

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