Site Plans

Site Plans Guide for Solar Developers & Installers

Site Plans are critical to identifying the feasibility and expected cost of building a solar system at a particular site. SolRiver Capital wants developers and installers to understand why we require Site Plans during the diligence process for you to secure an investment from us. In this guide on Site Plans, we discuss:


  1. What Site Plans are;
  2. Why SolRiver requires it from the developer and when it is needed;
  3. The scope SolRiver requires; and
  4. Who can provide the service.

    What are Site Plans?

    The Site Plans are documents showing the initial design and layout of the solar system on the site. They also show any potential civil work that will be required prior to building the solar system, as well as any civil work required to operate the solar system.


    Why are Site Plans needed and when do you need them by?

    The Site Plans are used to confirm that the proposed system design matches the size, equipment specs, anticipated production level, and location information that has previously been given to us. For developers, the investment in Site Plans is beneficial, as it allows SolRiver to identify any issues that would alter the EPC price. This helps us give the developer a more accurate bid price earlier in the transaction price. Site Plans should be provided prior to the signing of a term sheet.


    What is the required scope for Site Plans?

    The Site Plans should, at minimum: (1) show the solar array’s layout on the site, including the proposed string configuration, inverter placement and tie in points; (2) specify the azimuth and install type of the solar array; (3) address any civil work (i.e. tree removal, grading, demolition of existing physical improvements, etc.) required for the site prior to the installation of the solar system; (4) show the civil work (i.e. access roads, vegetation buffer, fences, etc.) required to operate the solar system; (5) explicitly state that the undermining potential from flooding was taken into consideration in designing the solar system; and (6) include adequate drainage and/or other measures to reduce exposure to flood hazards.

    A System Site Plan accurately takes into account: (a) all setback, zoning, and other permitting requirements, (b) does not contemplate building the System in protected wetlands, flood zones, shaded areas, or over existing improvements; and (c) includes space within the leased area for a perimeter road, access roads to the site and equipment pads, and any right of ways required by the utility. A full list of our requirements from our EPC template contract are below:

    • Cover Page. Including, at minimum, the following information:
      • Contractor’s name, contact information, and contractor’s license number
      • General Notes
      • Vicinity Map
      • Sheet Index
      • Version of required AHJ, Fire Department, and other codes applied
      • A parcel information section, including, at minimum, the following:
        • Address
        • Owner of Parcel
        • Tax Number
        • Parcel Area in acres
        • Leased Area in acres
      • A System summary section, including, at minimum, the following:
        • System DC size
        • System AC size
      • An existing site layout page (or pages) labeling and showing the location of, at minimum, the following:
        • Roadways and access roads
        • Tree-lines
        • Vegetation
        • Wetlands buffers
        • Flood zones and applicable BFE
        • Utility lines
        • Fence lines
        • Property lines
        • Streams
        • Buildings
        • Setback lines
        • Landfill areas
        • Major contours
        • Minor contours
        • Major monuments
      • A System site layout page (or pages) labeling and showing the location of, at minimum, the following:
        • The System equipment items from the Electrical Site Plan.
        • The items from the existing site layout page listed in the section above.
        • The lease boundary lines.
        • Silt fences
        • Washout areas
        • Construction staging areas
        • New access roads
      • A page (or pages) of detail design diagrams covering, at minimum, the following:
        • New access roads
        • Construction staging areas
        • Pads
        • Fencing
        • Washout areas
        • Silt fences
        • Filter socks
        • Storm water trenches
        • Any additional civil construction items
      • A Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan (or AHJ equivalent) page (or pages) complying with and to the extent required by any AHJ.
      • A Drainage, Erosion, and Sediment Control Plan (or AHJ equivalent) page (or pages) complying with and to the extent required by any AHJ.
      • If applicable, a Flood Mitigation Plan page and any requirements of any AHJ.


    Who can help prepare Site Plans?

    Haley Aldrich:

    SolRiver Capital

    SolRiver Capital is a solar investment fund dedicated to financing development, construction, and acquisition of small and mid-size utility-scale projects across the US.

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