SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – The oldest church in the United States is now solar powered. San Miguel Chapel is the oldest church in the country, built in the 1600s. The well preserved adobe chapel now has solar panels.
The transition to solar has taken five years. “36 inch walls, adobe everywhere how do you get that. We didn’t want any pipes and conduits going on the outside of the building none of that,” said Jake Barrow, Cornerstones Program Director.
Keeping the historic integrity of the building intact was the main priority for Cornerstones, a non-profit dedicated to protecting historic sites like San Miguel Chapel. In order to do that Cornerstones came up with a plan for the solar company making sure the construction wouldn’t threaten the historic structure.
The $80,000 project was funded entirely by grants and donations. The solar panel alone were between $20,000-$30,000.