REAL ESTATE INVESTMENT TRUSTS & FUNDS

Vicinity completes Australia’s largest car park solar program

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SHOPPING centre landlord Vicinity has completed Australia’s largest car park solar installation in South Australia with 1,400 solar shaded car spaces at Elizabeth City Centre.

The car park system is in addition to the 2.7-megawatt (MW) rooftop program which was completed in 2018 and brings the total capacity at ECC to 5.9MW.

Castle Plaza, which has an existing 1.3MW rooftop solar system, has also added more than 430 new solar shaded parking spaces as part of the latest stage of Vicinity’s national solar program, which has generated more than 15GWh of clean, renewable energy, helping power 17 centres across five states.

More than 12,000 solar panels have been laid across the two car parks, covering approximately 22,000sqm, larger than the field at Adelaide Oval. The projected annual renewable energy generation from both sites in the first year is more than 11.5 gigawatt hours (GWh) – enough to power more than 2,000 average SA homes for a year.

Vicinity’s chief strategy officer Justin Mills said: “While we’re keeping cars cool over the Summer months, the shades also help power our centres, and we know our customers and communities will welcome the new undercover parking at Elizabeth City Centre and Castle Plaza.”

Mills said Vicinity had also begun a trial of a 548kWh Sungrow Samsung energy storage battery at Castle Plaza.

“The Castle Plaza battery was key innovation in our $73 million investment in shopping centre solar and provides an on-site solution for storing and using any of the excess solar energy generated on-site.

“Our commitment to reducing our energy consumption and carbon footprint continues in 2020, when we will introduce four new electric vehicle parking stations across both Elizabeth City Centre and Castle Plaza.” Mills said.

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