KANSAS CITY, Mo — Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas is proposing legislation that could bring a solar energy farm near the Kansas City International airport. It's a concept the city has been working on since 2021 and conducting a feasibility study in 2022. According to Mayor Lucas, the long term goal is to reduce utility costs and power a third of Kansas City homes with green energy.
"We recognize that both gas and electric have seen ongoing cost increases over time. We believe that if we can provide this level of energy, we can fuel up to a third of the houses in Kansas City," said Lucas.
The city plans on building this project by the airport, which will be constructed in phases. The project aims to be as big as 3,000 acres with a push to break ground as early as spring 2024.
"Close to home, we saw that in Joplin, Missouri, a tornado not only destroyed a number of structures, it also had terrible impacts on their grid and the ability to deliver power and services for some time." said Lucas, "So we'll make sure that we address those issues long term and this is something that I think, makes Kansas City more resilient."
According to online project proposals, if the project gets approved, Kansas City's airport solar farm could provide more annual energy output than cities like Denver and Sacramento who have airport solar farms.
"We're certainly looking at federal grants to support, but most importantly, what that means is, it is not Kansas City taxpayers who are paying out of their own wallets, or at least their proverbial wallets to help on this project," said Lucas.
The city says the land to build this project was identified earlier this week and additional details will be released at a press conference inside KCI at 8:30 this morning, along with a better idea of what this project will look like.