Chicago Solar Express

Welcome to the City of Chicago’s rooftop solar portal!

The City of Chicago is accelerating solar energy, making installation of rooftop solar easier, cheaper, and faster than ever. By cutting fees, and reducing time-in-line, streamlining and standardizing permitting and zoning processes, the City of Chicago has made putting solar on your rooftop as efficient and affordable as possible. Get started:


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For Small Installations

(<13.44 kW, a typical house)

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For Large Installations

(>13.44 kW, commercial, industrial or other building)

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Solar Contractor Checklist

"Solar Chicago" bulk purchase program

On March 17th 2014, Mayor Emanuel announced Chicago was named Earth Hour Capital, winning a grant to help accelerate Chicago's solar market. 

In July, the City and partners Cook County, World Wildlife Fund, Environmental Law and Policy Center and the Vote Solar Initiative, launched Solar Chicago, a program to make rooftop solar more affordable than ever for Chicago residents.

In 2012, the City of Chicago and ComEd were awarded a grant under the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot Initiative to support solar PV installations by reducing market barriers and soft costs. The grant was sponsored through the Mayor’s office, and the team was comprised of multiple City, industry, utility, non-profit, and institutional stakeholders. Core project partners included West Monroe Partners, Environmental Law & Policy Center, and Illinois Institute of Technology.

As outlined in Mayor Emanuel’s environmental action agenda, Sustainable Chicago 2015, the deployment of these initiatives is a critical part of economic development in Chicago and integral to the City’s goal of becoming the greenest and most sustainable city in America, while giving more choices to residents and businesses.