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Brookfield, Nixon Peabody Install Solar Panels To Donate Energy To Low-Income DC Residents

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Nixon Peabody solar panels 799 9th st nw
Nixon Peabody and Brookfield's team lifting a solar panel at the opening of the 799 Ninth St. NW installation in 2016

This week, a year after moving into its new office at 799 9th St NW, which features an innovative, three-story live plant wall watered by a drip-irrigation system, Nixon Peabody unveiled a new eco-friendly installation. 

The law firm launched a nonprofit to install solar panels on the roof of three Brookfield-owned buildings, all of which will donate energy to affordable housing residents in the District. 

Brookfield Office Properties donated its roof space at 799 9th, 750 9th St NW and 77 K St NE for the project, which will create 182 kilowatts of clean energy, Nixon Peabody managing partner Jeff Lesk told Bisnow.

Nixon Peabody 799 9th St

The project will be the largest solar installation on DC commercial property, and the first to take advantage of a DC law passed in late 2013 that allows for this type of community energy sharing. Lesk, speaking above at yesterday's event celebrating the launch, said his firm could have used the energy to power its own downtown office space, but instead chose to share it with other parts of the city. 

"We ultimately decided it was a bigger benefit, in a more general sense, to develop this program for the benefit of low-income tenants," Lesk said, "but also for the district to help launch the program because someone needed to be first."

The panels on top of Nixon Peabody's building were completed yesterday, and the other two buildings will unveil them at the end of January. From the view on 799 9th, attendees could see the installation happening at 750 9th St. Jeff said the firm, again sponsoring Bisnow's annual affordable housing event in February, is looking for more landlords to donate roof space and hopes to launch another phase of solar panels in 2017.