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Kukui Plaza will cut electricity costs with high-rise PV system

By Star-Advertiser Staff

LAST UPDATED: 01:20 p.m. HST, Sep 06, 2012

The Kukui Plaza condominium association is taking aim at rising maintenance fees with the installation of a photovoltaic system atop the 32-story mixed use complex in downtown Honolulu that will significantly reduce its electricity bill.

The Association of Owners’ board of directors estimates it will cut electricity costs by about $23,000 a year by using the 200-kilowatt PV array to provide power for common areas, including elevators and lighting.

A large part of increasing maintenance fees has been rising electricity costs, according to the association.

The installation, done by Kailua-based Sunetric, required 47 helicopter lifts to hoist the panels and other components from the ground to the rooftop.

The system is expected to produce 397,545 kilowatt hours of electricity a year, offsetting about 32 percent of the association’s power needs.

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goodday wrote:
People that live in old apartments that are not individually metered have no care to save electricity.
on September 6,2012 | 12:05PM
kungfubob wrote:
does this comment pertain to kukui plaza because the last i checked, i still receive a massive electric bill from HECO for the electricity used in my unit. asinine comments from dare i say it... another ignorant local.
on September 6,2012 | 12:40PM
bobbob wrote:
kukui plaza is metered
on September 6,2012 | 05:46PM
islandsun wrote:
Another loss of cash flow for Heco. Rates surely to rise again & again to cover their ponzi scheme.
on September 6,2012 | 12:15PM
inverse wrote:
Just wait if Ala Moana Shopping Ctr can ever get past the barriers (rules, financial, etc) put up by HECO to cover almost the entire Ala Moana Center with PV generation panels. Ala Moana roof is wasted space, the Center is basically a daytime oriented business and maintenance is duck soup as the roof is easily assessable for techs to swap out individual bad panels or inverters that can all be maintained remotely via the Internet . Power transmission is a non-issue as the power will go directly to Ala Mo ctr and if any excess, to the surrounding area. Add some lithium ion battery storage capability in the future to smooth out electrical power surges dues to sudden loss of sun, etc and that would be a winner for everyone except HECO as HECO would easilty stand to lose a MILLION or so in loss revenue per year FOREVER.
on September 6,2012 | 01:07PM
islandsun wrote:
Yes, and the remaining would end up paying for the loss of cash flow with rate increases. HECO is a criminal enterprise. Maybe there is a mainland attorney willing to file a class action.
on September 6,2012 | 04:05PM
Kapakahi wrote:
I have a friend who serves on a condo board when they were approached by a solar PV company who proposed to pay the condo for the use of their rooftop to generate electricity. The amount offered was pretty paltry compared to the revenue stream the company was likely to get. In addition, drilling the holes on the rooftop to mount the panels pose a risk of damage to the waterproof membrane and the contract with the PV company protected them from any liability. In addition, the existing roof was near the end of its life cycle, meaning it would have to be replaced in a few years, necessitating the removal and re-installation of the PV panels, all at the expense of the condo owners.

It was not the same company and the deal did not include cheap or free electricity to the condo itself. It was merely a lease of the rooftop for staging a profit-making PV electrical generation installation. But the terms of the contract were absurdly one-sided and would have cost the condo owners considerable money over the lifetime of the contract. A clear net loss to their pocket books.

PV can clearly cut electric bills, as well as reduce consumption of oil and the resulting pollution. Tax credits make PV installations financially attractive. But there are unscrupulous PV contractors out there. And the company involved in the deal with my friend's condo board was one of the bigger ones. So buyer beware.

on September 6,2012 | 01:15PM
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