EVANSVILLE - The city of Evansville and Vectren Corp. (NYSE: VVC) are partnering on a planned $5.5 million solar project. The farm, located off of U.S. 41 near Oak Hill Cemetery, still needs approval from the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission.

Plans call for the 15-acre array to include some 8,000 panels. It will be the city's first ever public solar project. Mayor Lloyd Winnecke says "partnering with Vectren is allowing both entities to respond positively to the public's interest in local solar energy production, and we are thrilled to host the solar array within our city limits."

Vectren serves 144,000 southwest Indiana electric customers and the proposed array would plug into the utility's existing system. Chief Executive Officer Carl Chapman says "embarking on this partnership is among Vectren's first steps toward diversifying our electric generation portfolio. We are grateful for the opportunity to join the City of Evansville in bringing universal solar energy to our customers."

If approved, the project could be complete in 2018 and is expected to produce enough power for around 300 homes per year.