Philly to get major new solar panel plant

PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 28 (UPI) -- A new solar panel manufacturing facility will be built at the Philadelphia Navy Yard at a cost of hundreds of millions of dollars, officials say.

Peter Longstreth, president of the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corp., which owns and manages the Navy Yard on behalf of the city, said the Greek firm Heliotechniki S.A. will open a manufacturing plant employing 400 to 500 workers, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported Saturday.


The official announcement is expected to be made Monday by Gov. Ed Rendell, who will tout it as an important step in positioning Philadelphia as a key player in the emerging clean-energy economy, the newspaper said.

Longstreth reportedly said jobs at the 400,000-square-foot Heliotechniki plant would be "advanced manufacturing" involving "a significant amount of technology," adding it would represent an investment of "several hundred million" dollars in the city.

The Inquirer said the Navy Yard currently has 5.5 million square feet of new and redeveloped buildings, now employing 7,000 and with plans envisioning up to 30,000 workers. A "clean-energy campus initiative" are reportedly part of the effort.

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