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Geneva developer sees big future in solar housing

The Lake Tunnel Solar Village is the first solar-powered housing project in the city, but it won’t be the last, said developer Ryan Wallace.

A groundbreaking celebration is set for Thursday for the $8.53 million solar village on three acres of formerly city-owned land on Elizabeth Blackwell Street by Lake Tunnel Solar Village LLC, an outgrowth of SmallGrid. Meanwhile, Wallace is now eyeing land near Ridgewood Park on the city’s northwest side for the next project.

While Lake Tunnel Solar Village features townhouse and multi-family buildings, that next project will feature traditional two- and three-bedroom single-family homes powered by solar energy.

“They’re subdivided (the property),” he said. “It’s ready to go.”

Wallace, whose wife, Tracey, and mother, Marita, are the owners of Lake Tunnel Solar Village, said demand has been so strong for SmallGrid’s solar-powered housing concept that they decided to move into single-family homes.

“That (the single-family homes) is more for families or maybe retirees who want a two-car garage,” he said, noting they will be single-level as well.

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