A shopping centre on Queensland’s southern Gold Coast has installed one of Australia’s largest solar car park arrays, as part of a $30 million redevelopment project.
The 636kW system installed on the roof of the carpark at The Pines Elanora will generate over 1000MWh of electricity a year, enough to power up to 20 per cent of the centre’s air conditioning.
The array was installed by SunEdison and uses SolarEdge DC-DC optimiser inverter technology to maximise the amount of power delivered from each of the 2,050 Canadian Solar panels.
The project is being billed as Australia’s largest carpark solar installation – a claim we have certainly heard before. But by our reckoning, this claim is currently accurate, at least until the Adelaide Airport’s 1MW solar carpark is commissioned.
Second place would go to Alice Springs Airport, which recently added a 325kW solar carpark installation to its existing 600-odd kW ground-mounted solar PV power station.
The Pines project is also being billed as one of Australia’s top 20 commercial solar installations, joining what SunEdison ’s head of commercial and industrial operations, Nick Brass, has described as “a strong pedigree of early adopters for solar on shopping centres,” including Casuarina Shopping Centre in Darwin (1.3MW) and Shell Harbour Shopping Centre (1.2MW).
Manager of the Pines Centre, Hilary Jacobs, said introducing solar fitted with the local community’s values.
“A lot of households in our local area have embraced solar, so it is exciting to be introducing solar as part of our redevelopment,” she said.
“As a community shopping centre, it is important that we lead the way in reducing our environmental footprint.”