Absolute Storage Management (ASM) recently completed installation of a 117-module, 28-kW solar array atop its Midtown Vault Self Storage location in Memphis. The addition of the solar panels will help offset a portion of the building’s monthly operating costs, with an expected return on investment of less than seven years.
The photovoltaic panels are the latest upgrade to the facility, a former telephone-switch building that had sat vacant and decaying for 15 years. Since purchasing the property in 2006, ASM has refurbished the structure and improved the perimeter while maintaining its historic façade. The building houses more than 400 climate-controlled storage units ranging in size from five-by-five to 12-by-20.
ASM took advantage of several incentive programs to help finance the panels, including a 30 percent federal tax credit and a 12-cent-per-kWh energy buyback incentive from TVA. ASM used several Tennessee vendors for the installation, including LightWave Solar as its general contractor. Customer rental rates did not increase as a result of this project.
“We’ve wanted go solar at Midtown Vault since purchasing the property six years ago. Based on available incentives and decreasing material costs, this year it made economic sense for us to take that step,” said Michael Haugh, managing member/partner for Midtown Vault and president of ASM. “Along with the expected monetary savings, we’re looking forward to cutting down on our carbon footprint.”
The new solar array takes up about one-third of Midtown Vault's roof, allowing for future expansion. The facility is ASM’s second property to employ solar power. East Nashville Self Storage features a similarly sized array.
Founded and based in Memphis since 2003, ASM manages 70 self-storage facilities across the Southeast, encompassing more than 3.5 million square feet. Properties are in Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.