- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 3, 2016

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Entergy New Orleans has celebrated the start of construction on the city’s first large-scale effort to produce solar power.

Media outlets report that Entergy and city officials gathered Tuesday to break ground on the 1-megawatt pilot project. It is expected to be in service by mid-2016 and will be the only utility-scale solar installation in the Entergy system.

Entergy president Charles Rice says the project will integrate state-of-the-art battery storage technology. He says this should help with energy availability on cloudy days or at night.

In addition to giving information for future integrated resource planning - with more than 4,000 solar panels - the project will generate enough electricity to power 160 average homes.

Blattner Energy is set to start construction this month. South Coast Solar will assist in the installation.

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