Solar Power is a Dream Fulfilled for Local Coffee Roaster
Founded in 1994, when Portland’s downtown vacancy rate was 40%, Coffee by Design has now grown into a staff of 45, with four coffeehouses (three are icons of Portland’s downtown and one is at LL Bean’s flagship store in Freeport) and a micro-roastery on Portland’s East End.
“For years, solar had been a dream,” said CBD co-founder Alan Spear, “Originally we had thought we would just get a couple panels up there, but it became clear that the opportunity was to cover our entire roof with solar panels.”
That opportunity was a grant from Efficiency Maine, which offered a $20,000 grant for energy efficiency upgrades, including solar. ReVision Energy and CBD partnered to work on the grant, which was no small feat in itself. “It was a lot of work,” comments CBD’s other co-founder, Mary Allen Lindeman. “Luckily we had ReVision’s great staff to help us through the process and put the whole thing together.”
44 grid-tied photovoltaic panels now cover just about every usable inch of roofspace on their Washington Ave roastery. The system is expected to produce about half of the power used in the facility, offsetting roughly 18,000 lbs of C02 emissions from conventional electricity sources.
“For us, this was an opportunity to really think about who we [Coffee by Design] are and focus on our values,” Lindeman adds. “We decided that solar was part of those values and so we went for it – and we have been thrilled to see our customers respond positively to our commitment.”
Watch a VIDEO about Coffee by Design's solar project and learn more about how this iconic Maine business made solar work for them. Contact Jennifer at ReVision Energy for more details: firstname.lastname@example.org or (207) 589-4171.