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Naperville Park District is using clean, renewable energy through solar panels in 4 parks
The Naperville Park District installed its first rooftop solar panels at Knoch Park in 2011. In 2014 the District installed two new solar arrays: one at Nike Sports Complex and one at Knoch Knolls Nature Center. In 2016, a system with 117 solar panels was installed on the roof of the Fort Hill Activity Center. 

Energy from the sun is used to power the lights at our parks and any excess energy is fed back to the Naperville electric grid and credited to the Park District’s utility bill. 

Grants from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation and the City of Naperville’s Renewable Energy Program helped fund the Park District’s solar installations.

Solar panels at Nike Sports Complex
The solar panels at Nike Sports Complex that are mounted on the roof of the Book Family Pavilion are shown below, along with the educational sign that is installed near the pavilion.  The online monitoring system currently is not connected, however, park staff monitors the output monthly. Over the past 5 years, the system as produced an average of 16,000 kWh of electricity annually, offsetting 11 metric tons of carbon, an environmental benefit equivalent to adding 10 acres of forest.


NPD Array.JPG 

Solar panels at Knoch Knolls Nature Center
The Knoch Knolls Nature Center was designed to meet the highest standards of environmental sustainability. Its green features include an 18-kilowatt array of solar panels which can supply approximately 15% of the energy requirements of the building. Access live solar monitoring of the solar panels at Knoch Knolls Nature Center here

Solar panels at Fort Hill Activity Center.

Fort Hill Activity Center has 117 solar panels on the south-facing roof. This system can produce approximately 40,000 kWh of energy annually.  Access live solar monitoring here.

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On Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2011 Naperville Park District officials heard the good news for which they have been waiting for many months: the District has achieved national accreditation through the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA).

The decision was announced at the NRPA national conference in Atlanta following a formal hearing before the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA).

Naperville is only the second park district in Illinois to earn this distinction and the 104th nationally accredited agency in the nation; there are more than 10,000 recreation agencies in the United States. The Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies accredits a handful of park agencies each year that have completed a multi-step process involving a self-review by the agency, a site visit, and an evaluation and formal report by the Commission.

“We are extremely proud to bring this honor to Naperville,” said Park District Executive Director Ray McGury. “It’s an affirmation of our high standards and also an encouragement to continue bringing high quality recreation and parks experiences to our community.”

The Park District’s accreditation process began approximately one year ago and included an extensive self-evaluation by staff and a 5-day visit from CAPRA reviewers this past July. Maintaining the accreditation requires annual reports and 5- and 10-year reviews.

Park District staff members noted that the CAPRA process has helped them see the big picture, focus on long term goals and plans, review plans more regularly, organize documents so that they are accessible and useable, and collaborate more effectively with other departments and outside organizations.

Our Mission
We provide recreation and park experiences that promote healthy lives, healthy minds and a healthy community.
Our Vision
To be a national leader in parks and recreation providing and promoting high quality experiences and facilities at a great value to our community.
Core Values
Health and Wellness, Environmental Education, Stewardship and Sustainability, Community Enrichment, Public Safety, Accessibility, Personal Growth and Enrichment.
© 2021 Naperville Park District