- Associated Press - Tuesday, August 25, 2015

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Entergy New Orleans has chosen Blattner Energy Inc. to build its first solar power project in the city.

The utility announced the contract award in a news release Monday.

Construction is expected to start in early 2016.

Entergy announced in May it will install more than 4,000 solar panels at an existing site in eastern New Orleans.

Entergy officials say the project will incorporate new battery storage technology, allowing Entergy to test the feasibility of utility-scale solar generation in the city.

Blattner Energy is based in Avon, Minnesota. Entergy officials say Blattner has completed more than 225 projects in North America, including solar, wind and power delivery projects.

Entergy Mississippi is building three solar pilot projects.

Entergy Arkansas is also seeking permission to build an 81-megawatt solar project near Stuttgart.

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