April 9, 2010
HUD SECRETARY DONOVAN ANNOUNCES RECOVERY ACT GREEN RETROFIT GRANT FOR AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN VIRGINIA BEACH, VIRGINIA
Award to Virginia Beach project will create green jobs and reduce energy costs
RICHMOND - U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Shaun Donovan today announced that The
Russell House apartments in Virginia Beach, Virginia will become more energy efficient as a result of $1.1 million in Recovery Act funding being awarded to The Russell House, an affordable housing development. The award is part
of HUD's new Green Retrofit Program for Multifamily Housing, created through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The Green Retrofit Program is providing $250 million nationally to reduce energy costs,
cut water consumption, and improve indoor air quality.
"This funding will not only improve the quality of life for the residents of the Russell House, but will lower energy
costs and create quality green jobs at the same time," said Secretary Donovan. "This is an example of the kind of long-term, fundamental impact the Recovery Act is having on America's economy through clean energy
The Russell House is a housing development for seniors and disabled individuals in Virginia Beach. The renovations
will enhance the quality of life for residents and increase energy efficiency. The rehabilitation of the 119 units will produce approximately 57 percent savings in utility costs in addition to creating quality construction-related job opportunities. Retrofits will include the installation of EnergyStar refrigerators, the upgrading of hot water heaters
and air conditioning units, and the replacement of common area flooring, kitchen cabinets, counter tops, sinks, bathroom vanities and bathroom exhaust fans. The units will also be painted on the inside and carpet will be
installed. The owner has committed to maintaining an approved green retrofit operations and maintenance plan, adopting an integrated pest management plan and training the property managers in green building principles.
The Green Retrofit Program is designed to create thousands of green jobs across the country as workers retrofit
older federally assisted multi-family apartment developments with the next generation of energy efficient technologies. Grants and loans provided through this program help private landlords and property management companies to cut heating and air conditioning costs by installing more efficient heating and cooling systems and to reduce water use by replacing faucets and toilets. These Recovery Act funds also produce other environmental benefits by encouraging the use of recycled building materials, reflective roofing, and non-toxic products to reduce potentially harmful "off-gassing" of harmful fumes. Funds are awarded to owners of HUD-assisted housing projects
and can be used for a wide range of retrofit activities, ranging from windows/doors to solar panels and geothermal installation.
The Recovery Act includes $13.61 billion for projects and programs administered by HUD, nearly 75 percent of which was allocated to state and local recipients only eight days after President Obama signed the Act into law. The remaining 25 percent is being awarded through competitive grant programs, including the Green Retrofit Program.
To date, 98 percent of HUD's Recovery Act funds are in the hands of local communities, being used to improve housing and neighborhoods, while creating jobs. HUD is committed to implementing Recovery Act investments
swiftly and effectively as they generate tens of thousands of jobs, modernize homes to make them energy efficient, and help the families and communities hardest hit by the economic crisis.
In addition, Secretary Donovan and the Department are committed to providing the highest level of transparency possible as Recovery Act funds are administered. It is vitally important that the American people are fully aware of how their tax dollars are being spent and can hold their federal leaders accountable. Every dollar of Recovery Act funds HUD spends can be reviewed and tracked at HUD's Recovery Act website. The full text of HUD's funding
notices and tracking of future performance of these grants is also available at HUD's Recovery Act website.
HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes: utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at www.hud.gov and espanol.hud.gov.