City releases RFI/RFQ for Solar on Butterworth Landfill

Published on November 16, 2023

Diagram/Map of Butterworth Landfill Map

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. –  The City of Grand Rapids released a request for information and request for qualifications (RFI/RFQ) this week for the development of two solar photovoltaic projects at the Butterworth Landfill. The purpose of this RFI/RFQ is to gather information about the opportunities and challenges of developing two solar projects at Butterworth that can be operational in 2026. Eligible respondents may provide concepts specific to one of these projects or both. Responses must submit information by 5 p.m. EST on Friday, Dec. 29.

The first project under the RFI/RFQ – the highest priority – is a solar system that maximizes behind-the-meter delivery to the City’s Primary Circuit, which is an electrical distribution system the City owns and operates that supplies 18,000 street lights, traffic signals and approximately 120 facilities. The second project would utilize the remainder of the site for an independent solar project that would cost-effectively maximize local benefits and greenhouse gas emissions reductions.

The City seeks responses from all entities involved in and supporting the solar sector, such as developers, installers, and financial institutions that meet the eligibility requirements. The City is open to receiving responses from single entities or from entities that represent multi-party ventures that could provide creative solutions to deliver reliable and cost-effective projects designed to maximize the local impact of installed solar at Butterworth.

Only respondents that have experience installing solar with at least one of the below are considered eligible to respond to the RFI/RFQ:

  • At an EPA Superfund site, brownfield and/or closed landfill
  • Serving a locally-owned and operated electricity distribution system similar to the City’s Primary Circuit
  • In Consumers Energy’s electricity territory or, more generally, in the state of Michigan

All communication with respect to this RFI/RFQ must be submitted to Only information submitted to this email address will be considered for purposes of the RFI/RFQ. After all RFI/RFQ responses are reviewed, the City will invite select RFI/RFQ respondents to participate in an in-person workshop intended to inform the creation of a request for proposals (RFP). Only respondents to this RFI/RFQ will be eligible to respond to a future Butterworth Solar RFP.

Tentative Draft Schedule (subject to change as needed)

  • Week of Nov. 27: site visit
  • Week of Dec. 4: virtual Q&A session
  • Dec. 11: deadline for questions (5 p.m. EST)
  • Dec. 20: all answers to submitted questions posted online
  • Dec. 29: RFI/RFQ response deadline (5 p.m. EST)

The City will continue to provide updates on the new Butterworth Solar web site. For anyone interested in being included in the email distribution list with respect to this RFI/RFQ and future RFP, please email and request to be added to the distribution list.

On Tuesday, Sept. 5, the City Commission heard an overview of opportunities from the Office of Sustainability and Strategy and confirmed its support for issuing a RFI/RFQ for private development of solar across the full site – where approximately 60 acres have been identified as suitable for solar. The City believes up to 16.5 megawatts (MW) could be installed.


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Supplemental information:

Tuesday, Sept. 5 PowerPoint Presentation

Tuesday, Sept. 5 Committee of the Whole presentation on YouTube

Media Release: City to release RFI/RFQ for Solar on Butterworth Landfill

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