DECATUR, Ill. (WCIA) — The Decatur City Council approved on Monday a plan to bring green energy to the Decatur Civic Center, which could save the city thousands of dollars in the process.

The plan could construct a series of canopies over the parking lot of the Civic Center that would cover most of the parking spaces. On top of those canopies would be over 2,600 solar panels.

The project would cost an estimated $5 million and would be paid for in full by Peoria-based solar company Hawk-Attollo. The City of Decatur would incur no installation cost or operating expenses as the company would own and operate the system.

The city will, however, purchase the power generated by these solar panels for the next 15 years. But the cheaper, cleaner energy will save the city approximately $100,000 a year.

The project is expected to be fully operational in early 2024.