Above view of Honda dealership's roof with solar panels installed in the city of Ohio

Dover’s Parkway Honda adds solar panels to save money, reduce carbon footprint

Parkway Auto Group has installed solar arrays from Freedom Solar Power at its Honda dealership to reduce its carbon footprint and save money.

Originally published on Times Reporter.

Featured Image via Andrew Dolph.

DOVER ‒ Parkway Auto Group has installed solar arrays at its Honda dealership to reduce its carbon footprint and save money.

The installation is part of an initiative undertaken as Parkway strives to become 75% sustainable in the near future, according to Parkway Honda partner Mark C. Mears.

“Parkway Honda is setting a new standard amongst Ohio automotive dealerships by investing in on-site power generation and becoming one of the first car dealerships in Northeast Ohio to do so,” he said in a prepared statement.

Texas-based Freedom Solar Power installed a 7,038-square-foot solar array that consists of 248 panels producing 120.3 kilowatts of on-site electricity. The dealership expects save over $378,000 over 20 years.

A statement from the dealership said the solar array will reduce its carbon footprint by over 91.9 metric tons of carbon dioxide, equivalent to planting 1,516 trees and taking 20 cars off the road. The installation was completed in February.

“Parkway Honda’s partnership with Freedom Solar is making waves as one of Ohio’s premier solar installations in the automotive industry,” said Freedom Solar CEO Bret Biggart. “We are proud to partner with them in making their business more energy-efficient and helping them become one step closer to their sustainable goals.”

Mears said he “couldn’t be happier with our decision. We are one of the first dealerships in the county to go solar and we are proud to be leading the way within Dover and Tuscarawas County. By diminishing our carbon footprint, we are achieving advantages never seen before rather than just reducing our electricity bill.”

Why Parkway Honda is using solar

Parkway Honda partner Mark C. Mears stands beside equipment installed as part of the Dover dealership’s solar power system. Photo provided by Parkway Honda.

Mears said several factors played into the company’s decision to move forward with on-site power generation. Some of the factors included: federal incentives, the testimony of dealers in other parts of the state who have already transitioned, and the fact that the dealership has ample roof area.

“Installing solar has become a cost-reduction strategy for entrepreneurial automotive dealers and is growing rapidly amongst dealerships nationwide,” said Biggart.

According to the National Automobile Dealers Association, energy costs can be a dealership’s third-highest overhead operating expense, due to long operating hours and energy-intensive showrooms and lots.

“From a financial standpoint, going solar was an extremely smart investment,” said Mears. “Switching to solar power also demonstrates our commitment to environmental sustainability, which is an integral aspect of our company that we consistently strive towards.”