Vicinity to build Australia’s largest-ever property solar program

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Vicinity Centres (Vicinity) today unveiled details about the expansion of its industry-leading solar program with approximately $50 million of additional investment in solar and technologies across a further 17 shopping centres nationally.
The second stage of Vicinity’s solar project will create the largest property solar program in the country in scale and investment, and comparably rank among the top 10 biggest corporate solar projects in the United States of America1.
Vicinity’s in-house energy team, working alongside local and international experts, will manage the program at centres across Victoria, Queensland, New South Wales, South Australia (SA) and Western Australia (WA).
Stage two will generate more than 31,000 MWh of clean energy each year – enough to power 5,000 homes and equivalent to removing more than 18,000 cars from our roads.

Executive General Manager Shopping Centre Management, Justin Mills, said: “We know our centres have a considerable footprint in our communities which is why we’ve committed more than $75 million towards stage one and stage two of our solar project.

“This investment will generate clean power for our centres for the long term, make a positive environmental impact and deliver shared value for our customers, retailers and investors,” Mr Mills said.

“As technology advances so does the business case for solar. We anticipate strong investment returns with the project to generate an IRR of approximately 12%, while also reducing our consumption from the national electricity grid by up to 40%.”

Mr Mills said at least 300 highly-skilled jobs would be created during the implementation of this second stage with another 40 permanent, on-going positions nationally once the project is completed.

“We’re committed to energy leadership targeting renewable energy, combined with battery and other storage technology and creating efficiencies across our portfolio, as part of Vicinity’s Integrated Energy Strategy. The program supports our focus to create sustainable, market-leading shopping, dining and entertainment destinations,” Mr Mills said.
Vicinity announced stage one of the solar program earlier this year with work already underway at five centres in SA and WA. Stage two is expected to be completed in late 2019.

Solar project highlights

Solar Program Metric Stage 1 Stage 2 Total
Investment ($ million) 28 ~50 >75
Capacity size (MW) 11.2 20.6 31.8
Number of sites 5 17 22
Annual energy generation (MWh) 17,490 31,057 48,547
Annual carbon off-set (kg co2) 16,985 33,542 50,527
Cars off road 9,532 18,824 28,356
Annual houses powered 3,007 5,339 8,346
Panels laid end to end (km) 64 127 191

Equivalent to:

Melbourne to Shepparton
Sydney to Bathurst
Brisbane to Ballina

¹SEIA’s Solar Means Business 2017 Report - https://www.seia.org/solar-means-business-report

For further information please contact:
Joel Crean
T +61 447 044 215
E Joel.Crean@vicinity.com.au

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