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HomeRenewablesConstruction begins on community-owned ‘resilience hub’ in Atlanta

Construction begins on community-owned ‘resilience hub’ in Atlanta

Groundswell, in partnership with the Community Church Atlanta, Stryten Energy, InterUrban Solar, the City of Atlanta, the Wells Fargo Foundation, and GM, celebrated the construction launch of one of the first community-owned resilience hubs in the Southeast.

The 34.1-kW solar installation at the Community Resilience Hub at the Vicars Community Center at the Community Church Atlanta will utilize 320 kWh of battery storage to provide community members with a location where they can safely gather in the aftermath of an emergency or severe weather event to allow the community to recover safely and effectively. Outside of emergencies, this community resilience hub will support Community Church’s ongoing service to the community. The church provides meals to 400 families weekly and serves as a meeting place for local organizations.

Groundswell works with community partners to build resilience hubs at centralized, trusted community locations where community members can access reliable power for their essential devices, continue receiving information as emergencies develop, and store medications sensitive to temperature when their neighborhoods face natural hazard impacts and emergencies. Hubs like the one at the Community Church are an essential precaution against the effects of climate change that are already being felt across the country and around the world. Thanks to the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), the Vicars Community Center project leverages elective pay to deliver community ownership. The project also applied for and received a low-income bonus tax credit allocation associated with Section 48e of the IRA.

As the developer for this community resilience hub, Groundswell worked with leaders from the Community Church to meet the greatest needs within the neighborhood while building off the groundwork laid by the Breaking Barriers project. Stryten Energy is designing, manufacturing and installing the battery, allowing the resilience hub to provide three days of backup power for critical uses during power outages.

This community resilience hub will be owned by the Community Church thanks to the dedicated efforts of the church’s leaders in partnership with Groundswell and funding support from the GM Foundation, a donation by Stryten Energy, and the direct pay solar tax credit provision of the IRA.

The Wells Fargo Foundation provides ongoing support to advance community ownership of resilience hubs like the one at the Community Church Atlanta. Wells Fargo has been a key partner in Groundswell’s work designing and implementing a financial model that leverages the IRA’s direct pay provision to deliver community ownership. The GM Foundation is also providing funding support for this community resilience hub. InterUrban Solar is leading engineering, procurement, and construction alongside SunCatch Energy.

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