The Nottingham City Council approved plans to develop the UK’s largest PV canopy at two of the city’s Park and Ride sites.

The two projects, built at the Queen’s Drive and Colwick Racecourse Park and Ride sites, will be constructed at the same time and are expected to be completed by April 2015. The arrays are expected to produce enough energy to power 479 homes a year while also generating around £216,000 annually for the council.

The Queen’s Drive array will consistent of 4,000 panels while the Colwick Racecourse will be made up of 3,000 panels. Together, both projects will reach 10,500 square metres in size – large enough to cover the Nott’s County football stadium’s pitch one and half times over.

The arrays will provide a massive boost to the city’s energy output, as the Queen’s Drive project will increase the amount of solar power produced on the council’s own land by 400% while generating more than 1.0Gwh of energy and saving 600 tonnes of carbon annually.

The Queen’s Drive array will also help power Nottingham’s electric bus fleet, as 50% of their fuel requirements will be provided the PV project through charging ports located at the site.

Councillor Alan Clark, Nottingham City Council portfolio holder for energy and sustainability said: “Harvesting power from our urban energy farms means that we can gather a large amount of sustainable energy for the city. …It will provide locally sourced energy for local people. … The energy at Queen's Drive will provide 50% of the power needed for the new electric bus fleet and the urban energy farms will also provide a much needed jobs boost for the city. It is all about making sure Nottingham has secure energy supplies in the future, providing excellently priced energy and looking after the city's wider environment.”