Spinnaker tower at night, Portsmouth

Solar parking and EV infrastructure in Portsmouth

Portsmouth City Council has announced that a new project has begun, to improve solar panel provision and EV infrastructure for the community.

Situated at Lakeside North Harbour, the new facility will be one of the largest solar parking canopy projects in the UK, as it utilises roof-mounted solar PV arrays across five buildings and solar car park canopies across three car parks with battery storage provisions. This will consist of:

  • Above existing car parking spaces, solar canopies will be created with 7,105 solar PV panels.
  • Electric vehicle charging infrastructure will be implemented alongside the provision for additional charging points to be added as demand increases.
  • At times of high demand, the battery will provide service to the local electricity network, with this coming from the battery’s ability to store excess energy.

This facility is anticipated to save more than 860 tonnes of carbon dioxide, whilst the solar PV system is able to generate more than 4 million kWhs every year – the equivalent of powering 1,300 homes for a year. Just over 64% of this power will be consumed by the facility, whilst additional power will be provided by the battery. This storage will be controlled to make sure that the greatest benefit is seen for people using the facility, with peaks and troughs in the grid seeing the battery charging or discharging to boost efficiency. An example of this is that, during times of high-power prices, the battery will discharge to Lakeside to reduce grid consumption.

Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Greening the City, Cllr Kimberly Barrett, said:

“We are constantly aiming to improve our solar power in Portsmouth, and to begin working on possibly the largest solar canopy project in the UK is a great step in coming closer to our goal of Net Zero by 2030 and using greener energy in the city.”

The facility in Portsmouth is similar to one being utilised by Northumberland County Council, as they look to revolutionise their fleet operations, which you can read more about here.


Image credit: iStock

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