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Africa’s largest solar system to be built in Nairobi mall

Friday September 19 2014

Solar panels at Strathmore University. UK firm Solarcentury plans to construct a solar carport on the topmost storey of a car park at the upcoming Garden City Mall in Nairobi to provide alternative energy source to tenants. PHOTO| COURTESY

Solar panels at Strathmore University. UK firm Solarcentury plans to construct a solar carport on the topmost storey of a car park at the upcoming Garden City Mall in Nairobi to provide alternative energy source to tenants. PHOTO| COURTESY NATION MEDIA GROUP

NATION CORRESPONDENT
By NATION CORRESPONDENT
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UK firm Solarcentury plans to construct a solar carport on the topmost storey of a car park at the upcoming Garden City Mall in Nairobi to provide alternative energy source to tenants.

The solar project, which will provide renewable power, is part of 32-acre integrated residential, retail park, hotel and office development where Garden City Mall is being constructed on Thika Road in Nairobi.

The solar installation would be financed through Solar4Africa, a 12-year financing plan, whose aim is to enable the mall to overcome barriers frequently affect commercial solar projects, Solarcentury’s East Africa director Dan Davies said.

“The system we have developed is perfect for urban areas where land is at a premium yet energy needs to be supplied near to demand,” Mr Davies said in a statement.

The solar project will constitute 3,300 solar panels on the carports. The dual-mode technology will provide solar energy in the daytime meaning less is used from the grid, and when the grid is down, the system also reduces the consumption of costly diesel back-up.

“Essentially, the system is able to operate in either mode. This dual-mode system ensures a consistent energy supply whilst reducing diesel and grid consumption,” Mr Davies said.

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