New York City's largest solar power facility will be built at Freshkills park on Staten Island, with maximum generating capacity of 10 MW, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.

The solar installation at Freshkills, once the world's largest landfill, will generate enough electricity to power several thousand homes and increase the city's renewable energy capacity by 50 percent.

"It's fitting that this site, long associated with the most stubborn challenges of urban development, will now be a shining example of cutting-edge solutions," Bloomberg said.

A 19-hectare (47-acre) site at the park will be leased to renewable energy company SunEdison, which was selected in a public auction.

"The facility will be able to generate up to 10 megawatts of electricity, enough to power about 2,000 homes, which will feed into the Con Ed system and double the city's solar energy production," the city said.

Bloomberg said the solar energy plant and the expansion of the park will complete the transformation of Freshkills, which operated as a landfill until 2001.

"It's clean energy, and it's just a start. It's just a start," Staten Island Borough President James Molinaro said. "I am certain that eventually, we'll have some windmills up here." EFE