Green & Healthy Affordable Housing

Across the United States, the story is the same: demand for affordable housing far exceeds supply. Some agencies are forced to choose the cheapest materials in the interests of housing the greatest number of people.

We see an opportunity here. By investing in sustainable features, affordable housing sites can save money on utility costs -- especially energy -- and improve the health of residents. 

To test out this idea, the Ecology Center is assisting the Ann Arbor Housing Commission with two new affordable housing projects that are intended to be model examples of green and healthy residential construction. The project will take place from spring of 2014 through late spring or summer of 2016.

The two proposed building sites will repurpose land in Ann Arbor currently being utilized by the AAHC. The existing buildings, which are primarily single-family detached homes, will be replaced with higher density attached townhouse-style units, adding more units to AAHC’s portfolio and more healthy, green homes for people who need them. In addition, this project addresses the question of “What is quality affordable housing?” and how we can better serve residents and communities.

Following the success of earlier programs, such as the Environmental House demonstration center and the Michigan Renewable Schools Program, the Center’s Green and Healthy Homes program is showing how we can maximize energy efficiency and cost effective energy investments, reduce or eliminate toxicity, and integrate highly durable materials into affordable homes to benefit residents and communities.

News

October 25, 2016
News
While the Ecology Center has been working to end childhood lead exposure in Michigan for years, this National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week we joined a coalition of over fifty groups calling for federal agencies to act boldly to eradicate lead exposure on a national scale.
October 13, 2016
News
The Ecology Center, in coalition with other health and environmental groups, demand that the state government end childhood lead poisoning. We’ve known about the dangers of lead for years, and we've failed as a society to mount a response scaled to the size of the problem.
September 28, 2016
News
Coal tar sealants cover a vast majority of driveways, parking lots and playgrounds. They are meant to extend the life of the asphalt underneath. Unfortunately, these sealants contain a hazardous chemical that is a known carcinogen.

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