This is a story about an interesting collaboration of five different organizations: San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), Clear Channel Outdoor, Inc., Lundberg Design, 3Form, and Konarka. San Francisco needed to replace its existing transit locations, and the SFMTA selected Clear Channel for the contract based upon a transit shelter design by Lundberg Design. So far, the first five of roughly 1,200 new, sustainably designed transit shelters have been installed, and ~400 of the total will be powered by roof integrated photovoltaics. The shelters have wireless internet, NextMuni, and Push to Talk capabilities.
Even though only a third of all the new transit shelters will have grid-tied solar, all of them will be made with green materials. The undulating, colorful roof is a 3form material with 40% post-industrial content, the steel is comprised of roughly 70% recycled content, and the lighting is powered by energy-efficient LEDs. Plus, if feasible, some of the locations may add small wind to generate additional power.
Interestingly, all of the five participating organizations seem to get something out of the arrangement. Clear Channel is paying for 100% of the new shelters, which is certainly a benefit to SFMTA, and Clear Channel gets to use the shelters for advertising. The SFMTA receives a guaranteed annual advertising payment or 55% of revenue generated, whichever is higher.
Also, 3form developed a new, specialized material to encapsulate the flexible solar panels within the recycled polycarbonate, and this integrated solar product will certainly fit well with all the other green materials produced by the Salt Lake City-based company. All the while, Konarka has a customer for their proprietary, flexible solar panels, and Lundberg Design gets to leave its imprint on the city.