I’m a ballet mom. That means that I spend a good part of my free time hanging out at the ballet school while my daughter attends class. It also means that any ballet-related news stories catch my attention. So you can imagine my delight to come across an article that is not only related to ballet but also incorporates my love for all things eco.


On Monday, the Eagle-Tribune featured a story about a solar installation currently underway at the Cardinal Shoe factory in Lawrence, Mass. Cardinal Shoe is probably best known as the manufacturer of the popular Gaynor Minden pointe shoe, a special type of ballet shoe worn by ballerinas who have spent many years honing their skills.


Soon, ballerinas of all ages who wear Gaynor Minden’s pointe shoes will know that a clean and renewable energy source was used to manufacture their beloved shoes. Richard Bass with Cardinal Shoe expects that the solar array project will be completed in the next few weeks.


Once finished, the 1,092 solar panels installed on the factory roof will provide all of the electricity used by the plant as well as meet the power needs of the other tenants in the 160,000 square-foot building.


What I found most interesting about the project was that Bass expects a return on investment time of just four years. This is significantly shorter than the 10 plus year ROI that I’m used to reading about. Several factors have decreased the typical ROI time including the use of federal tax credits as well as Massachusetts’ Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SREC).


Learn more about the project by visiting the Eagle-Tribune site: 'Largest solar powered ballet shoe factory' now in Lawrence.


A solar-powered ballet shoe factory
Cardinal Shoe will generate all of its power from a new solar array.