What do you do when your 40 old building tower is in need of a facelift? This was the dilemma that the owners of the CIS tower in Manchester faced after the original facade of the building became in serious need of repair. Their solution? To cover it in solar panelsto provide electrical power to the building.

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The original facade of the service tower was composed of small mosaic tiles which had over time begun to fall exposing the concrete structure to the weather. After looking at the available options, the owners of the building decided to cover the 120m. tall service tower with over 7,000 photovoltaic panels. The panels, as well as calling back to the original facade of the building and weatherproof the service core, are also expected to provide the equivalent energy needed to power about 55 homes for a year.

The total cost of the project ended up being about 5.5 million pounds (about 10 million dollars). And was recently finished, making it the largest vertical solar array on Europe.