Solar installer HBS New Energies has landed a contract to install nearly 800kWp of solar across more than 200 new homes in Oxfordshire.

HBS has won the contract from housebuilder Crest Nicholson, which is developing 232 highly sustainable homes across the 25-acre Elmsbrook Eco-Town development in North West Bicester.

Of those homes, HBS is to install rooftop solar PV on 228 of them, amounting to a total of 793.2kWp of new solar capacity.

The £80 million housing development is one of the country’s first zero-carbon communities and, as well as rooftop solar PV, boasts a suite of clean energy technologies including rainwater harvesting systems, EV chargers and a district heating network.

HBS’s design team has identified a building-integrated solar system using black panels for aesthetic reasons, and system sizes will range from 2.4 – 4.5kWp. The business said this system was the most cost effective and visually pleasing for the new homes.

Roger Martin, senior quantity surveyor at Crest Nicholson, said that HBS was selected after the installer delivered “faultless performance” on a similar development at Oakgrove in Milton Keynes.

Construction of the new homes began in Spring this year and HBS expects its solar installation teams to be on site in the coming weeks.

James Bull, managing director at HBS New Energies, said: “This unique, zero carbon eco-town in Bicester is truly an exciting project for HBS to stamp its mark on. Elmsbrook offers a perfect opportunity for our team of experts to demonstrate why HBS New Energies are at the forefront of delivering solar power for the housebuilding industry.

“We look forward to supporting Crest Nicholson in the construction of this innovative and sustainable community, one that will set the standard for future new towns to follow.’’

While the development serves as good news for HBS New Energies, it is indicative of a wider trend in UK Solar towards new build developments, driven by construction firms seeking to build and market more sustainable homes.

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