Stimulus-funded renovations to housing for elderly, disabled will generate green power

Monday, October 5, 2009 at 6:55pm
Staff reports

Metro Nashville has garnered $6 million in federal stimulus funds from the Department of Housing and Urban Development. The funds will be used to for environmentally friendly upgrades to two of its high-rise properties for the elderly and disabled — Vine Hill Studio Apartments and Edgefield Manor.

"These HUD funds will allow us to continue our decade of effort to reinvent community-owned housing," said MDHA Executive Director Phil Ryan.

Previous endeavors have ranged from complete rebuilds of housing — most recently, J. Henry Hale Apartments on Charlotte Avenue — to environmentally friendly improvements for water and energy usage.

More than $3.3 million was awarded for the installation of a variable refrigerant volume heat pump system at Vine Hill Studio Apartments, a 10-story, 209-unit property located at 625 Benton Ave. The systems, which are very popular in Europe, utilize outside air to control indoor temperature. Funding at Vine Hill also will go toward window replacement at the 31-year-old building.

MDHA will receive more than $2.6 million for a VRV installation at Edgefield Manor, a 44-year-old, nine-story building located at 525 Shelby Ave. The VRV technology will be used for heating and cooling each of the 113 high-rise apartments.

MDHA is seeking additional funding for a geothermal installation for the 107 cottage-style apartments that are part of the Edgefield Manor development.

In addition, the Agency will install solar panels on Edgefield Manor's roof. While the building will continue to utilize electrical power, the solar panels will generate electrical energy that will be returned to the TVA power grid to supplement the green power program.

The generated power can then be utilized by homeowners and other electrical power consumers, and MDHA will be reimbursed by TVA for the power the solar panels generate.

"Our Board and staff are pleased to be 'outside the box' — that is, selling power to TVA!" added Ryan.

Once the VRV installations and other improvements at Edgefield Manor and Vine Hill Towers are complete, MDHA anticipates carbon emission reductions in excess of 603,000 pounds per year. The VRV systems are expected to lower heating costs by up to 60 percent and lower cooling costs by up to 30 percent.

2 Comments on this post:

By: DaddyYo on 10/5/09 at 7:49

Whoa, look at the army of the unemployed marching to jobs installing solar panels and HVAC systems. That'll last about a month for all five of them.

Thanks Pres. Obama, on behalf of my Grandchildren who are paying for this.

At least we'll know that when we move into low income housing, because liberals destroyed the ecomony and took our jogs, that the government is saving on heat and air costs

I feel better already..

By: Blanketnazi2 on 10/6/09 at 12:59

"The generated power can then be utilized by homeowners and other electrical power consumers, and MDHA will be reimbursed by TVA for the power the solar panels generate. ..

The VRV systems are expected to lower heating costs by up to 60 percent and lower cooling costs by up to 30 percent.

Sounds more like our grandchildren will be saving money.