The Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile installed 12 new 320-watt solar panels on the hotel’s rooftop. Based on the state of Illinois' formula guideline, the project will conserve 5,719 kWh per year—enough to power the lighting in the hotel’s redesigned 9,000-square-foot fitness center, or the lighting in 50 guestrooms, for a full year.
The installation was the result of an internal hotel competition in which eight teams comprised of the hotels managers researched, developed and presented a return-on-investment business cases to the hotel’s executive team. The hotel provided a $10,000 capital investment and freedom of ideation with the mantra to improve guest experiences, revenue, and/or community involvement. The solar panel project won the competition.
“We were excited to have been presented this detailed case by our internal management team who recognized that the solar investment will reduce the hotels energy cost and our carbon footprint benefiting the property, our ownership and improved stewardship of the environment we live and work in,” Adam Korcheck, the property's director of sales & marketing, said in a statement.
The panels, provided by Chicago-based Earth Wind and Solar Energy, are located on the hotel’s ninth-floor rooftop, and are positioned on the southeast corner above Michigan Avenue, among the hotel’s bee hives and rooftop garden. The location was selected for structural and wind loads, as well as sunlight optimization, and allows for future expansion.
The Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile is located near the city’s main attractions. The hotel consists of 1,200 guestrooms and suites, which offer views of the city, flat screen TVs and more. The property also provides 68,000 square feet of meeting space, food & beverage options at the Harvest restaurant or the Rush Street Pantry. The newly renovated fitness center offers 9,000 square feet of exercise equipment, as well as on-demand fitness classes in the “Fitness Lab.”