Over the past several years, ABCDC has made a pledge to sustainability and energy efficiency across its affordable housing portfolio. ABCDC is driven by the dual goals of reducing our carbon footprint and creating healthier homes for the 1,000+ low- and moderate-income (LMI) residents who call our properties home. Given that buildings account for nearly 70% of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in Boston, the connection between housing and the environment cannot be overlooked.
Electrifying and upgrading our existing buildings is not easy, nor inexpensive, but ABCDC is committed to tackling the challenge head on. This commitment has been spearheaded by our Director of Real Estate Development, Caitlin Robillard.
“Housing development is inherently an environmental issue because of the amount of energy and resources that go into building and operating these properties. While new, green construction is laudable and exciting, we cannot overlook the need to preserve and upgrade our existing housing stock. Our team is working hard to bring green technologies and clean energy to our portfolio of affordable housing to help ensure the health of the planet, our residents, and future generations.”
Caitlin, along with our Real Estate Development Project Manager, Noah Coolidge, are actively working on five projects with a focus on energy efficiency, fresh air ventilation, electrification, and, in some cases, the integration of on-site solar.
- Ashford Street Rehab: ABCDC is planning the redevelopment of our 12-unit supportive housing property on Ashford Street.. Updates to the property will include a new roof, adding fresh air ventilation systems, all new Energy Star Certified appliances, improving insulation, and new low-flow aerators and plumbing fixtures.
- 6 Quint Avenue Rehab: ABCDC will be implementing green technologies at our 6 Quint Avenue property, which will provide 14 units of deeply affordable rental housing to individuals in the advanced stages of addiction recovery. The rehab is underway and includes switching from oil to electric heating, adding electric cooling, installing fresh air circulation systems, improving insulation, and installing a new high-efficiency domestic hot water system.
- Carol Avenue Apartments Rehab: ABCDC is planning a significant rehab of its 33-unit affordable property at 6, 10, and 12 Carol Ave, which provides family-sized units for a range of incomes. The project includes a new roof, all new windows, installing solar panels on the roof, switching to all-electric heating and cooling, electric domestic hot water, and added insulation. These upgrades will reduce energy by over 50%. ABCDC will seek Green Enterprise Certification for this project.
- Brian J. Honan Apartments Deep Energy Retrofit: This property consists of 50 affordable rental units across nine townhouse-style buildings, and was developed by the CDC in the early 2000s. Given that the building envelope and major systems need to be replaced, the Brian J. Honan Apartments is ideally suited for a Deep Energy Retrofit. The rehab project will include a switch to all electric heating and cooling with a new high-efficiency VRF air source heat pump system, a new roof, new windows, all new highly-insulated siding, and rooftop solar panels.
- Hano Homes Deep Energy Retrofit: Hano Homes is a 20-unit rental property, comprised of ten duplex rowhouses on Hano Street in Allston. This project includes an all-new building envelope, new electric heating, cooling, and fresh air systems, and electric domestic hot water. The property is projected to see a 70% reduction in energy use, and with a rooftop solar array, is projected to achieve net zero energy use. ABCDC will seek PHIUS Passive House Certification for this property.
With their strong commitment, ABCDC has secured over $4 million to support these projects! Our staff is continuing to pursue additional opportunities for the rest of our properties, and we will continue to look for new real estate opportunities where we can implement plans to achieve net zero carbon emissions over time.
ABCDC would like to thank our project partners who have helped to push these projects forward, including the Department of Housing and Community Development, the City of Boston’s Mayor’s Office of Housing, Community Economic Development Assistance Corporation, BlueHub Capital, Eastern Bank, Brookline Bank, MassHousing, Massachusetts Housing Partnership, and Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) Boston, Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, the Low-Income Energy Affordability Network (LEAN), Housing Ministries of New England, Charlesbank Foundation, and Liberty Mutual Foundation.
If you would like to learn more about our upcoming projects and our commitment to support our environment, please visit our website or contact Caitlin at [email protected].