May 14, 2008
TOPEKA RECEIVES ENERGY STAR EXCELLENCE IN AFFORDABLE HOUSING AWARD FROM HUD AND EPA
TOPEKA - The City of Topeka received today an Energy Star Excellence in Affordable Housing Award from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). HUD Regional Director Macie Houston and EPA Regional Administrator John Askew jointly presented the award to City Manager Norton Bonaparte, Jr., and Randy Speaker, the city's Department of Housing and Neighborhood
Development Director, at a press conference at one of the city's Energy Star homes, 517 SW Western Street.
Only 14 Energy Star awards were presented in the nation this year. Two of the 14 awards were national and were presented at the National Awards Ceremony in Washington, D.C. Topeka received one of 12 regional awards for incorporating Energy Star concepts into its federally funded affordable housing program.
"We are pleased that our energy conservation efforts are being nationally recognized," said Norton N. Bonaparte, Jr., Topeka City Manager. "Through the commitment of our partners, we are proud to be implementing best practices in providing affordable low- to moderate-income housing."
EPA Regional Administrator John Askew said, "We at EPA are pleased to join with HUD in recognizing Topeka's Energy Star success story. With Energy Star, we use less energy to operate our homes, we put fewer pollutants into our
air, land and water, and we all save money while helping the environment."
Topeka's Housing and Neighborhood Development Department has been working in partnership with the Kansas Housing Resources Corporation (KHRC) and Cornerstone of Topeka to construct 10 Energy Star rated, low- to moderate-income rental housing units.
The first Energy Star qualified home at 518 SW Western Street was completed by Breakthrough House, Inc., in July 2007 and is a single-family duplex that features controlled air flow, high performing windows and doors, a high efficiency HVAC system with a SEER 16 heat pump, and R-19 wall and R-50 ceiling insulation rating throughout the house, as well as Energy Star qualified products such as light fixtures and appliances.
Today, there are five duplexes totaling 10 rental housing units in the city's affordable housing program, all promoting the whole-house approach to improving the comfort and energy efficiency of new and rehabilitated homes while maintaining attractiveness and affordability. In addition, a cost comparison to Non-Energy Star housing units completed in 2006 indicates that the Energy Star units cost $8.77 less per square foot.
HUD Regional Director Macie Houston said, "Topeka's Home Energy Efficiency Program is proof that housing affordability and energy efficiency can go hand in hand. I congratulate the City and its Housing and Neighborhood Development Department for pioneering an Energy Star housing program that is a model not only for the four-state region, but also the nation."
For more information about Energy Star, visit: http://www.energystar.gov/ or call toll-free 1 (888) 782-7937.
Topeka City Manager, Norton Bonaparte, Jr. accepts the Energy Star Award from HUD Regional Director Macie Houston and EPA Regional Administrator John Askew. Others pictured from left to right: Topeka City Council Member Deborah Swank, City Housing Specialist Warren Woodruff, Macie Houston (at podium), Housing and Neighborhood Development Director/Asst City Manager, Randy Speaker, Norton Bonaparte, HUD's Regional Environmental Officer Paul Mohr and John Askew. Only 14 Energy Star awards were presented in the nation this year. Two of the 14 awards were national. Topeka received one of 12 regional awards for incorporating Energy Star concepts into its federally funded affordable housing program.
One of five duplexes in the city's affordable housing program. All units incorporate Energy Star concepts that will improve the comfort and energy efficiency of the homes while maintaining attractiveness and affordability. The city partnered with Kansas Housing Resources Corporation and Cornerstone of Topeka to construct the duplex pictured at 517 SW Western Street. Breakthrough House, Inc. completed the first Energy Star single-family duplex at 518 SW Western Street.
This duplex is one of rental housing properties in the Topeka's affordable housing program.
HUD is the nation's housing agency committed to increasing homeownership, particularly among minorities; creating affordable housing opportunities for low-income Americans; and supporting the homeless, elderly, people with disabilities and people living with AIDS. The Department also promotes economic and community development and enforces the nation's fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet