Phoenix introduces solar-cooled rail shelter

With Phoenix reaching triple-digit temperatures this week, a new solar-cooled rail stop provides welcome relief for commuters waiting for Valley Metro (AZ) trains. Customers can press a button at the shelter, and fans will blast them with cold air for 15 minutes. According to a Reuters story, the blowers can cool the stop by as much as 40 degrees. Mayor Phil Gordon brought the idea back from a trip to Dubai, and NRG Energy Center Phoenix agreed to build the cooling system — just in time for Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game next week. “This partnership with NRG will have a direct and positive impact on our riders,” said Valley Metro CEO Steve Banta in a statement. “In addition to being a welcomed customer amenity, this project is the first use of solar energy on our system. We’re hopeful it can lead to other solar opportunities along our current line and as we grow.” NRG picked up the $300,000 tab for the shelter and will pay ongoing operations and maintenance expenses.

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