The Santa Barbara City Council embraced a modest solar power
project atop Fire Station No. 2, located at 819 Cacique Street,
authorizing the expenditure of $161,000 to get the job done. If all
goes according to plan, the solar panels should provide 65 percent
of the station’s energy needs, saving City Hall $4,000 per year.
Initially, the city’s bean counters estimated it would take 29
years for the project to pay for itself, but with rising electrical
rates and the availability of solar rebates, that time period could
be considerably shorter. Councilmembers chose Fire Station No. 2
after abandoning more ambitious plans to install solar panels on
the downtown library rooftops due to financial and aesthetic


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