Top Level Solar Production: Parking Garage Top Solar in North County

Commercial Case Study

Parking Structure for Oceanside’s North Coastal Live Well Health Center - Oceanside, CA


Commercial developer Hamman Construction was seeking a way to switch a county building to use a majority renewable energy with storage capability to cut costs, lower peak demand, and provide decades of savings.


A Parking Garage Top Solar array consisting of 1,403 panels in a single 23×61 array with unobstructed, direct sunlight and providing the additional benefit to employees and visitors of shade for vehicles on the top level of the parking structure. Excess energy production is first used to charge a Tesla Energy storage system, then sold to the utility to offset grid energy use.

Customer Benefit

The San Diego County tennant operates on 95% renewable energy consumption and less than 5% utility energy consumption. The Power Purchase Agreement provides energy cost savings as well as cost stability for the tennant; the agreement also allows the county offices to consume over 950,000 kilowatt hours of renewable energy annually in place of grid energy. The PPA arrangement delivers immediate tenant energy savings with zero investment.

parking garage top solar, solar on parking structure

Quick Facts

Tesla Powerpack, Tesla in San Diego, best solar storage

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Net Energy Metering 3.0 (NEM 3.0) is the incoming law created by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). The new tariffs and fees will impact both residential and commercial solar systems built in California. 

As this notice is posted in November of 2022, the Proposed Decision from the CPUC outlining the proposed NEM 3.0 terms is expected soon. This comes after a year’s delay. Once the new agreement is finalized and passed into law, there will exist a designation of the deadline under which new systems will continue to qualify for NEM 2.0 rates. 

The new NEM 3.0 rates will be designed to lower the value of electricity during the daytime hours, when solar is producing, and increase the value of electricity during the evening hours, when solar homes and businesses purchase electricity. In short, NEM 3.0 will create a “sell low, buy high” proposition to new solar system owners. 

To Californians looking to install a solar system on their home or commercial building, the NEM 2.0 rates will be preferred. As of this post, the solar industry does not know the details of how different the NEM 3.0 rates will be from the NEM 2.0 rates. 

Please use the HES Solar website as a resource to learn more, and please take our offer to speak with an HES Solar Energy Consultant at no obligation.

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Robert Laverty

Senior Energy Consultant, Residential

Robert Laverty joined the HES team in the summer of 2018, bringing his ten years of solar design experience and his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Puget Sound with him. Robert is dedicated to finding solutions to help families produce and store electricity in order to reduce their reliance on grid power as well as help reduce their household’s carbon footprint. Robert’s experience as a newspaper editor as well as his involvement with the sustainability-focused Rocky Mountain Institute drives him to constantly seek out innovative ways to meet energy needs through renewable resources as well as helps him share those ideas with Southern California homeowners. When not at work or volunteering time with his church or community, Robert spends time with his wife and two sons or pursues his passion of fly fishing.
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