CHALLENGE – Two-fold: 1) grocery stores always look for ways to manage energy consumption; and, 2) grocery stores always look for ways to improve customer service. Fry’s has many Energy Star stores focused on best practices to save energy, and it had used shade canopies to provide some premium parking spots, but management wanted to take its energy conservation efforts and its shaded parking concept to a higher level.
STRATEGY – Do both and add advertising on top of it. The PowerParasol design for Fry’s maximized coverage of the hot black-top lot and energy generation, plus it created 28 sign opportunities for Fry’s to advertise products and merchandise and to communicate to its customers.
RESULT – Fry’s has reported savings on energy and an increase in customer traffic. The shade covers not only 220 parking stalls, but all driveways, sidewalks and grocery cart corrals. At night, the elevated structure and consistent lighting create an environment that customers report as feeling more safe and secure. Electric car charging stations were installed with the project.
Final project specs: 580 kW DC system with 1932 photovoltaic solar panels covering 74,800 sq. ft. (1.71 acres) with 28 potential sign locations.