Real Estate developer turns green

Garden City, the new 32-acre mixed-use development on Nairobi’s Thika Superhighway, has confirmed the installation of Africa’s largest solar panel covered car park canopy on the roof of the Garden City Mall.

The panels are expected to produce approximately 1,246,000 kWh per year. Reducing CO2 emissions by an estimated 492 tonnes per year and drastically reducing the service charge and occupancy costs for Garden City retail tenants.

Garden City is being developed by sub-Saharan Africa’s most experienced private equity real estate investor Actis, using a ‘green-by-design’ approach. Koome Gikunda, Investment Principal at Actis said: “We were looking for a turn-key solution that could produce clean power and pay for itself with the energy it produces. This solution not only takes advantage of Kenya’s exceptional solar resources but also provides additional covered parking to customers of the Garden City Mall.”

The planned 858.3 kWp solar PV car port installation will be developed under NVI Energy’s Solar4Africa plan, as part of their Pay-By-Solar scheme. They will provide guarantees covering power and equipment performance and, together with their technical partners, will install, operate and maintain the system for 12 years.

Designed to work with the power grid, the PV system will automatically switch over to provide power together with back-up generators during times when the grid is unavailable, reducing diesel use and saving money. The installation of the PV panels will help Garden City achieve its Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification.