Client at a glance

Client
Col Crawford Lifestyle Cars
Location
Brookvale, Sydney
Completion date
2015
System size
100kW

In March 2015 Autonomous Energy completed installation of a 100kW solar PV system at the Col Crawford BMW dealership building in Brookvale.  This system was designed, supplied and installed by Autonomous Energy and is phase 1 of a larger 260kW solar power project (1000 solar panels) over the Col Crawford group of car dealerships and service centres. Concurrently Autonomous Energy has implemented a large energy efficiency upgrade throughout the Col Crawford facilities. The project is genuinely ground-breaking because approximately half of all the solar panels are integrated into a custom designed solar carpark shading structure that generates pollution-free solar electricity at the same time as providing shade and cover from rain for parking and customers using the rooftop car park area. Autonomous Energy worked closely with the Clean Energy Finance Corporation to structure an innovative finance arrangement for this project that enabled the client to save money from day one, at no upfront capital cost.

Autonomous Energy solution

  • This project was particularly challenging from a structural engineering point of view due to the construction of a large solar car park shading system mounted on the concrete slab of the top floor car park. The whole solar car park was custom designed to maximise the amenity of the existing car park, ensure structural strength of the concrete slab and building as well as maximising the available solar resource - all with no loss of car parking spaces.
  • The new solar power system, along with the energy efficiency measures, has slashed the company’s electricity costs by more than 60 per cent, saving them 682,736 kWhs each year – the equivalent to permanently removing 577 cars from the road or generating enough energy to power more than 200 houses.
  • The system was installed over several different roof surfaces with different types of roof sheeting and structural supports. Autonomous Energy’s solar engineers collaborated with independent structural engineers to ensure that the entire system was installed to all relevant Australian standards.
  • The SMA Cluster Controller data logger - upon installation - was one of the first implemented in Australia.  SMA is the world’s leading manufacturer of solar inverters and data logging equipment and this sophisticated data logger will give Col Crawford unprecedented control over their system including the ability to remotely control the systems power output.


What Col Crawford says

We are excited to be implementing such an innovative clean energy project that protects the environment and improves the efficiency of our business. At the end of the day, it simply makes good business sense...  the project delivered by Automomous has a phenomenal business case and essentially the decision was a no-brainer.

Steven Crawford, Principal, Col Crawford Lifestyle Cars


This project attracted significant coverage in the media – further details can be found at the following:

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/newslocal/northern-beaches/brookvale-car-dealer-has-1000-solar-panels-on-roof-and-is-saving-thousands-of-dollars/story-fngr8hax-1227307927176

http://www.thefifthestate.com.au/business/finance/car-dealership-halves-energy-bills-with-solar-led-upgrade/72830

http://www.thesustainabilityreport.com.au/cefc-cba-finance-car-dealership-energy-efficiency-loan/

http://reneweconomy.com.au/2015/sydney-car-dealership-installs-100kw-solar-leds-for-65-power-cut-30758

Client at a glance

Client
Col Crawford Lifestyle Cars
Location
Brookvale, Sydney
Completion date
2015
System size
100kW

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