IKEA installs 4,424 solar panels atop upcoming Memphis store - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

IKEA installs 4,424 solar panels atop upcoming Memphis store

Solar panels outside IKEA's Memphis location. (Source: IKEA) Solar panels outside IKEA's Memphis location. (Source: IKEA)

The solar panels are in place and Memphis' IKEA is just months away from opening.

IKEA's customized solar power system is the largest rooftop array in Tennessee. It consists of 4,424 panels that can produce 2 million kilowatt-hours of electricity, which is enough to power 205 homes every year.

"Installing the solar panels is another exciting and sustainable step in the progress towards opening the future IKEA Memphis,” store manager Trisha Bevering said. “IKEA strives to create a sustainable life for communities where we operate, and IKEA Memphis is adding to this goal with Tennessee’s largest rooftop solar array.”

Click here to see more photos of the solar panels.

Consistent with the goal of being energy independent by 2020, IKEA has installed more than 700,000 solar panels on buildings across the world and owns approximately 300 wind turbines, including 104 in the U.S.

"Being a Swedish company, we have a strong commitment to sustainability," IKEA public affairs manager Joseph Roth said. "We try to incorporate whenever and wherever possible."

Click here to see a sneak peak of IKEA's Memphis store construction tour.

Roth said 90 percent of IKEA's U.S. locations have solar panels on them, but this will be Tennessee's first IKEA.

"It will not make the store energy independent," Roth said. "We still will be drawing from the grid to supplement what we're generating here on site from the solar panels."

Roth said the devices were a multi-million dollar investment, but said they will bring in a large economic return.

"It reduces the operating cost of the store and of course it's renewable energy," he said.

IKEA has not officially announced an opening date for the Memphis store, but the company continues to say the store will open late Fall 2016. 

IKEA is hiring for the Memphis store. Click here to learn more about getting a job with the company.

If you've never been to an IKEA, you may be interested in learning more about the store's famous food court. Click here for a review.

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