StorageVille, a self-storage facility in Winnipeg, Canada – is part of the Shindico commercial real estate investment portfolio. Working closely with Shindico President and CEO, Sandy Shindleman, the management team at StorageVille sought out ways to reduce our operating costs. One area which came to our attention is in the renewable energy space with the opportunities available in Manitoba. Often, when someone mentions “renewal energy” and “Manitoba” in the same sentence, the first thing to come to mind is hydroelectricity. However, Manitoba is also a perfect location for utilizing another renewal energy source – solar technology. So perfect in fact that Manitoba Hydro began offering its Solar Energy Pilot Program in 2017.
Going green with solar technology: where did we start?
It has always been top-of-mind for us to find emerging trends that can help reduce our environmental impact. We began investigating solar technology as a renewable source of energy a few years ago before the pilot program through Manitoba Hydro started.
Our first endeavour into this source of energy came through installing a system powered by solar technology to provide uninterrupted power to our computer systems in the event of an electricity outage. The success bred from this project helped us lean towards expanding our capacity upon receiving word of the Manitoba Hydro’s program.
StorageVille’s two Winnipeg storage unit locations are solar enabled
At the time this news release is published the self-storage facilities at 830 Waverley Street in Winnipeg’s southwest and 123 Reenders Drive in Winnipeg’s northeast have completed the solar technology installation. Both projects are pushing energy generated from this renewable, green source and helping reduce the load on the grid. And, any excess or unused energy is returned to the Manitoba Hydro grid.
Shindico supports StorageVille’s solar technology choice
As part of our business case, our ownership group was presented with the solar technology opportunity. As a market leader in commercial real estate and investment management in Canada, Shindico is constantly searching for ways to inject innovation into its portfolio. While simultaneously reducing our environmental impact for future generations to come, it is a mandate both organizations share.
Shindico is looking forward to the solar power installations at StorageVille, our self storage facilities in Winnipeg, as these projects represent our pilot program in exploring other installations in a number of our retail and multi-family properties. These projects not only fall in line with energy conservation and savings but go along way in off setting other significant expenses such as the ever-increasing City of Winnipeg property taxes we face annually.
President and CEO of Shindico
Solar technology a sound business case for commercial properties
With any form of innovation, the metrics and outcomes are key. Here is what we will set as targets for achievement through the participation in the solar panel pilot program from the estimated figures based on calculations during the feasibility report:
- Reduction of our energy consumption supplied from Manitoba Hydro by 56% via the energy produced from the solar technology;
- To give a sense of the size of our project, we selected to use 370-watt solar panels and we deployed 184 panels between the two Winnipeg StorageVille locations;
- Solar energy produced from the technology will output 68.08kW which will be utilized to power StorageVille’s HVAC systems;
- The power generated from the solar technology at both self-storage facilities is forecasted at 150,884kW of energy annually. That is the same as powering approximately fourteen single-family homes for a year (estimated consumption rate of 900kWh per household per month);
- The expected lifetime production of the solar panels installed at the StorageVille locations is to be approximately two million kilowatt-hours.
Other benefits of utilizing solar technology
Besides the economic benefits to the province, created when switching to a solar energy strategy and the environmental impact – what else is gained?
- Reducing the negative environmental impact that is caused when Manitoba Hydro needs to build a new dam, including minimizing manufacturing costs. Having more energy available for Manitoba Hydro to export as a resource for the province;
- Creation of new jobs for Winnipeg and Manitoba while providing support to an emerging industry sector.
At StorageVille, our decision to join Manitoba Hydro Solar Panel Pilot Program was a sound business decision while addressing issues facing our fragile planet. As a proud, Winnipeg-based company partnered with a Shindico, the leader in commercial real estate in Manitoba, we firmly believe what our city and province have to offer. And, we appreciate the support we’ve received from Winnipeggers in return!
About our guest author, Glen Ladell, General Manager and Co-Owner at StorageVille
Glen Ladell is the General Manager of over 20 years and Co-Owner for both Winnipeg locations of StorageVille. Glen leads by example through a friendly demeanour, vast experience, and dedication to delivering quality, dependable customer service. As well, his professional development attributes include a Certified Self Storage Manager (CSSM) designation.