Randy and Teresa Marston, the new owners of Island Self-Storage, are implementing a number of eco-friendly changes to the facility at 1304 Alberni Highway in Parksville, British Columbia, Canada. The initiatives include new solar panels that were recently installed on the south-facing roof of the office building, which also includes a newly built residence for the Marstons. Additional solar “tracker” panels, which tilt and swivel to follow the sun, will soon be installed on four of the storage buildings, and 10 power-generating windmills will be added to the front of the property, according to the source.
“Our goal here is to run it entirely on solar and wind power,” Randy Marston said. The couple also hopes to sell excess power to the local electric company, BC Hydro.
The couple recently sold Oceanside Storage, which is next to their new storage business, as well as their 10,000-square-foot home in favor of living onsite. They decided to take a green approach to upgrading their acquisition. The property features sustainable landscaping and a water-catchment system with underground tanks, the source reported. Runoff from the roofs and paved areas will be directed through an oil filter, then deposited into the tanks to irrigate the property.
The office features cabinetry and marble built by Randy Marston, a builder for 23 years. It also has an electric fireplace, antique drink and snack-vending machines, and wall-mounted, high-efficiency ductless heating units.
“We had to figure everything out before we even started building,” said Randy Marston, who consulted with a local solar and wind-energy specialist. “This building has one-foot [thick] walls, 16 inches of Styrofoam under the floor, triple-pane windows and R-70 insulation in the ceiling. We want to use this building as a model.”
The storage units have also undergone an energy overhaul. The thin metal doors were replaced with thicker doors that include weather-stripping. Thicker Styrofoam was added under the floors, and heating will be provided by heat pumps that are expected to slash the business’s heating costs by 25 percent of its current level, Randy Marston said.
Although the couple hopes their green efforts will save their business money, they also want to establish a working model of a sustainable building and beautify the industrial area. “We’ve tried hard to support local businesses with this construction. And part of our business model is to improve the neighborhood, wherever we go,” Randy Marston added.
Island Self Storage features drive-up, heated units that include individual door alarms. Additional property amenities include video cameras, sea-container rental, and the sale of moving and packing supplies.