Case study: the apartment buildings embracing solar

Strata committees are really taking a shine to solar power. Find out how two landmark buildings in the City of Sydney rose to the challenge.

Across the City, apartment owners are banding together to install rooftop solar and reduce their reliance on the grid. Here are two recent examples.

Ahead of the curve: One Darling Harbour

The residents of One Darling Harbour, which comprises 210 apartments and a hotel, take great pride in their waterside digs. “This is a prestigious building, and there is an expectation that things will move forward,” facilities manager Tristan Ramsay says.

That’s why residents were determined to install solar panels on the building’s curved rooftop. “Initially, solar installers were telling us the curved roof was too difficult for solar,” Ramsay says. “However, advice from an independent consultant told us otherwise.”

Two months after successfully installing 99 solar photovoltaic panels, One Darling Harbour has reduced its electricity use by 10 per cent and the system is expected to pay for itself within four years.

Hyde Park Towers: leaving its neighbours in the shade

The building manager at Hyde Park Towers, Allan Hoy, has long championed sustainability: he organised LED lighting and efficient pumps and boilers within the building, helping it achieve a 4-star NABERS rating.

“The installation of solar was a logical progression in the sustainability initiatives and was enthusiastically supported by the strata committee and owners,” Hoy says.

Initially, shading from neighbouring buildings and rooftop infrastructure made solar look unlikely for Hyde Park Towers. However, that changed when Hoy discovered innovations that allow solar panels to continue generating power when partially shaded.

The new 12.2 kW installation is expected to reduce common area-energy use by about 3 per cent per year – or 18,000 kWh.

Interested in rooftop solar for your apartment building?

Rooftop solar is a real option for apartment owners in the City of Sydney. To find out more, check out the following articles:

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