Essex shopping centre turns to solar

Rockspring Property Investment Managers, in conjuction with Ellandi LLP and Syzygy Renewables, has installed a solar array on the Grays Shopping Centre in Essex. The group has also secured planning for solar projects at two other Rockspring retail outsets; The Dolphin Centre in Romford, and the Marlands Shopping Centre in Southampton.

Approximatley 200 solar panels covering a space of 15,000 sq ft on the roof of the shopping centre which will produce around 45,000kWh per year. The array will deliver savings of approximately 600 tonnes of CO2 over the life of the project.

The scheme will deliver enough electricity to power the shopping centre’s car park for half of the year. Under current health and safety regulations, the centre is required to provide 24 hour lighting.

The solar project follows Rockspring’s 1.6MW Westcott Solar Park in June last year. Located on a former World War II airfield at Westcott Venture Park in Buckinghamshire, the Solar Park produces around 365,000 kWh per year, saving 70 tonnes of carbon and enough energy to provide over 15 percent of the electricity consumed by the 60 plus companies located on the business park.

Commenting on the installation of the solar project, Richard Bains, European Director at Rockspring, said: “The introduction of solar panels at Grays Shopping Centre further demonstrates Rockspring’s ongoing efforts to reduce the environmental and social footprint across its portfolio. As one of the UK’s leading fund managers, we recognise our responsibility to minimise the environmental impact of our assets, and believe that one of the obvious ways to do this is through on-site generation. This not only reduces our carbon footprint, it also saves us money and gives us a sensible return on our investment.”

“Having received planning for a further two schemes at Southampton and Romford, we look forward to starting work on site next week, working with our joint venture partner, and alongside Syzygy, who are also scoping a further five projects across our multi-let office portfolio.”