Automotive Dealership Proceeds With Solar Power

Lost Pines Toyota is also the only LEED Gold certified car dealership in the Austin area.
Lost Pines Toyota, Bastrop, Texas. Image courtesy of Freedom Solar

Freedom Solar of Austin, Texas, has started installing a solar power system at Lost Pines Toyota, a full-service automotive dealership located at 806 Texas 71 W in Bastrop, Texas. The project is slated for completion by the end of the year and will make the Lost Pines location the first automotive dealership in Bastrop to go solar.

The solar array will comprise more than 700 SunPower solar panels on all the dealership’s rooftops including its showroom, sales and service departments, as well as the oil change facility. Overall, the rooftop surface totals 34,000 square feet. The panels will produce nearly 370,000 kilowatt-hours of solar power annually, or 60 percent of the facility’s electricity needs. This capacity has the purifying power of 9,835 trees and will offset 246 tons of carbon dioxide per year, which is the equivalent of removing 30 cars off the road. In addition, the project will save Lost Pines $750,000 over the 25-year lifetime of the panels.

Lost Pines Toyota’s attention to energy efficiency and sustainability doesn’t start here, the facility is the only LEED Gold certified car dealership in the Austin area, awarded for new construction. In addition, the property’s green initiatives include a water collection cistern—it recycles rainwater and air conditioner condensation by using it for irrigation—reduced noise pollution by eliminating its overhead PA system storewide and handwashing vehicles to reduce water usage. Moreover, throughout the service department, everyone, including technicians use iPads, with the goal of going completely paperless.