Rosemead, Calif.-based Southern California Edison (SCE) recently launched the nation’s largest solar cell installation. The project is estimated to place 250MW of photovoltaic (PV) technology on 65 million square feet of roofs on southern California commercial buildings. According to the company, the installation plans were prompted by advances in solar technology that reduce the cost of installed PV generation. When combined with the size of SCE’s investment, the resulting costs per unit are projected to be half that of common PV installations in California.

In a request to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to install the solar cell technology during the next five years, SCE estimated the cost for the project will be $875 million. The utility plans to begin installation immediately on commercial roofs in Southern California’s Inland Empire, San Bernardino, and Riverside counties, said to be the nation’s fastest growing urban region.

“This project will turn two square miles of unused commercial rooftops into advanced solar generating stations,” says John E. Bryson, Edison International chairman and CEO. “These new solar stations, which we will be installing at a rate of 1MW a week, will provide a new source of clean energy, directly in the fast-growing regions where we need it most.”