Solar Canopies in Parking Lots

What is a Solar Car Park?

It’s difficult to accept the fact that your nearest surface parking lot is contributing to the worsening climate conditions. The open surfaces do not allow rainwater to percolate. Instead, they absorb heat, warm up the air around it, and create urban heat islands that multiply the effects of global warming. While the solution to this is as simple as roofing the parking lot, there’s a sustainable and future-proof solution to this problem – converting the surface car park to a solar car park.

Surface parking lots that have solar panel roofs can provide shade to the vehicles, generate clean electricity, and double up as EV charging stations too.

But how do these solar car parks work? Let’s take a look.

How does a solar car park work?

A solar park has three main components – a roof, a frame, and a functional inverter.

Parking operators mount the solar photovoltaic panels on canopy-like roofs that act as a shade for parkers. The frame holds the canopy in place above the vehicles and the inverter optimizes direct current to power the entire car park. It also converts direct current into alternating current and feeds it into local grids.

Solar Car Park

Four reasons to convert a parking lot to a solar car park

1. EV charging

Solar car parks can double up as charging stations for EVs, making parking more convenient for motorists who no longer have to search for a separate refueling station.

It creates a cleaner ecosystem where you power EVs with solar energy. At the same time, you also help EV owners offset their carbon emissions and reduce their dependence on traditional fossil-fuel electricity.

2. Lower electricity bills

Unlike conventional EV charging stations, solar car parks use renewable solar energy to generate electricity, lowering both carbon emissions and the car park’s electricity bills. For perspective, a parking spot covered with photo voltaic (PV) panels producing 4.8MWh electricity yearly can save you around $1000 per day!

Keep in mind that solar panels have initial setup costs. However, most lot owners find it’s not a hassle to maintain the system. They also tend to recover the investment cost within a couple of years.

3. Adaptable and scalable

Any parking lot can be converted to a solar car park. Even multi-level parking spaces can install solar panel roofs on the top deck. That said, top-deck solar parking costs more than surface parking setup. Lot owners can start with a smaller solar parking setup and scale up later as they recover funds to buy new solar panels.

4. Additional revenue

Car park operators can sell the excess electricity generated by solar panels to their local energy production and distribution networks. This way, operators can supply clean electricity to the community while opening up a new source of income.

Also Read: Solar-Powered Cars: Facts or Fiction?

Wrapping up

If you’re a parking lot owner looking to reduce your carbon footprint (and your bills), a solar car park is a great investment that futureproofs and maximizes the profits of your parking lot while making sure you’re not contributing to the worsening state of the climate.

Smart parking is another great way to streamline parking and reduce the excessive carbon footprint that comes from cruising around looking for a good spot to park. With Get My Parking, you can retrofit your existing parking equipment and digitize your parking lot without burning through your budget. Our off-the-shelf, Plug N Play solutions enable seamless digital access while reducing the wastage of resources spent on expensive new upgrades.

Take a look at our complete set of smart parking management solutions to learn more!

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