By educating our community and ourselves about green building practices, we can build more efficient, well-located homes. In this way we conserve natural resources, protect the environment, and serve our primary mission, to build and improve homes, neighborhoods, communities and lives.
Low-income and traditionally marginalized communities are already more likely to experience housing instability, displacement and health issues that are climate and pollution-related. Producing well-built, energy efficient, affordable housing helps address environmental and housing inequities. Green building practice also create healthier homes (fresher air, lower VOC's, and lower carbon output) that can make a big difference in the quality of life of residents and the longevity/long term viability of the structure.
Mountain Housing Opportunities (MHO) has long been committed to providing housing that is not only affordable but environmentally sustainable. MHO’s green activities span across our three active departments: community investments (rental development), homeownership, and essential home repair.
There has been so much focus on affordability and stability of housing as the primary aspects of what makes housing a social determinant of health. But what I like about this abstract is that it also includes housing location and quality as two of the four pillars. Decreasing chemicals and increasing ventilation are big things to help us create greener buildings AND healthier buildings, but also where we choose to build is a huge aspect of MHO's green and health-centered development practices. MHO has attempted to align with community goals for reduced carbon emissions by selecting sites close to public transportation, major employment areas, and commercial corridors in an attempt to reduce commuting distances. MHO will also be installing EV charging stations for the first time at Maple Crest. MHO also try to build as densely as practical on any given site to help create well-located density and prevent sprawl. The Community Investments department developed the Glen Rock Depot, a LEED Gold mixed-use building with 60 apartments over 9,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial space.
All of the new single-family homes built by our Homeownership department meet Energy Star energy-efficiency standards. The 68 new homes built through our Self-Help program meet both Energy Star and SystemVision™ standards.
Our essential home repair division also uses Green Built NC’s energy and water efficiency standards when selecting new equipment, fixtures, and appliances.
East Haven Apartments, Eagle Market Place Apartments and Maple Crest at Lee Walker Heights have generated a lifetime total of 361 MWh, equivalent to planting 4,224 trees or removing 558,828 tons of CO2 emissions. Most apartment units are also Energy Star rated, helping to save energy costs. All of these renewable energy systems create environmental and economic benefits for our community and the residents we serve.