Solar Canopy Innovation Celebrated by Gov. Scott

SunCommon Solar Canopy
Solar Canopy
Solar Canopy
solar canopy timber frame close up shot

On a brisk (single digits!) January morning in our capital city, we unveiled our latest innovation, the Solar Canopy, at the first public installation at Montpelier’s Hunger Mountain Co-op. Though his lips were likely frozen, our co-founder James Moore was able to proudly introduce a personal dream of his, the Solar Canopy, to an audience of SunCommon employees, Hunger Mountain Co-op shoppers, energy industry partners, our state’s entire press corps and our new Governor Phil Scott. Wow.


The muffled mitten-clad applause greeted each speaker to the podium and made our new Governor chuckle as he said “It’s kind of a muted clap over there” before delivering his remarks at his first press conference celebrating this new Vermont innovation.

Governor Scott, a renowned Thunder Road racecar driver, compared the versatile Solar Canopy design to the creative approach needed in working with racecars. “I love when you can accomplish two things at once. I hope to see more [of this ingenuity] in the future. Congratulations to SunCommon and Hunger Mountain Co-op for this tremendous project.”

The solar structure uses beautiful handcrafted timber framing from New Energy Works Timberframers and is a first for Vermont. The Solar Canopy expands solar options beyond the traditional rooftop and backyard and its versatility allows Vermont households and small businesses to go solar over their driveways, parking lots, patios, or woodpiles, or create a new, functional outdoor space. A single bay Solar Canopy, which covers two parking spaces, generates enough solar power for the average Vermont home.

Jake Carving Harvest Hill Golf Into Wood
Solar Canopy with SunCommon Prius
Solar Canopy Installation Hunger Mt. Co-op

“SunCommon is focused on driving change in our energy economy and that mission fosters innovation. As Vermonters we appreciate our built environment, from our historic downtowns to bucolic barns dotting our roadsides. I designed SunCommon’s new Solar Canopy to be both beautiful and functional, embracing Vermont’s classic heritage and its clean energy future” – James Moore, co-founder of SunCommon

Solar Canopy Launch Event Photo
This is exactly what we’ve been waiting for. The Solar Canopy will generate the solar power we need to stabilize our energy costs and have our home heating, electricity and transportation powered by sunshine. And, it’s just really pretty!
Karen GlitmanSolar Canopy since 2017

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The Solar Canopy can be scaled up to meet the power needs of local businesses while stabilizing their energy costs. “The Solar Canopy suits our bottom line as a smart, sustainable investment,” said Kari Bradley, General Manager of Hunger Mountain Co-op. “We are reducing our electric bill for years to come and expect these panels to generate power for at least 25 years, long after we’ve paid for this project.”

Hunger Mountain Co-op is using the Solar Canopy not only to provide their customers with electric vehicle charging and shelter from inclement weather, but also to inspire.

“Our goal is to motivate members of our community and our 8,000 Co-op members to pursue their own solar projects,” said Bradley. “The Solar Canopy is a beautiful statement of what’s possible with renewable energy and serves as a daily reminder that the Co-op cares about sustainability.”

Want to learn more about the Solar Canopy?

Each Vermont home is unique.  We aim to match the right solar solution to your home and property.  Now, we can help you go solar over your driveway, your patio, your woodpile, or create a functional, new, outdoor space with this beautiful, timber frame structure.


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