The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently announced that Washtenaw County, Mich., will receive a $250,000 grant to produce 30 new affordable green rental units in Ann Arbor.
The county will use Avalon Housing Inc., a community-based affordable housing developer, to create these new apartments, which will feature a sustainable site design, water-conserving fixtures, energy-efficient appliances/lighting, and environmentally friendly building materials.
Funding will come from HUD's HOME Investment Partnerships Program, which is believed to be the nation's largest block grant program to support the production of affordable housing.
Washtenaw County and Avalon will build 39 new rental units in downtown Ann Arbor that will benefit families earning 50 percent or less of area median income and 14 units to be reserved for special-needs tenants.
Upon completion, all assisted units will be certified as Energy Star-qualified housing. Energy Star housing units must meet guidelines for energy efficiency established by the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency and are at least 15 percent more energy efficient.
Washtenaw County will ensure that Avalon completes the following tasks: uses a sustainable site design; installs water-conserving fixtures, energy-efficient appliances, and lighting; uses environmentally beneficial materials and practices; implements a construction waste-management plan; uses low-volatile-organic-compound paints and sealants as well as low-emitting formaldehyde composite wood; uses mold-prevention techniques; and gives residents an instruction manual that provides information on how to maintain the green features of their homes.
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