‘Green Zero Net Energy House’ being constructed at 1025 Florida Ave.

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'Green Zero Net Energy House' being constructed at 1025 Florida Ave.
An image of construction at 1025 Florida Ave., posted on the Richmond Community Foundation's Facebook page on July 25.

A local nonprofit that has won acclaim for a program that rehabilitates blighted homes and properties in Richmond — and then works to sell them to residents who complete a first-time home buyer program — is building a “Green Zero Net Energy House” at 1025 Florida Ave.

On Tuesday, Aug. 8, the Richmond Community Foundation is set to hold a public demonstration at the site that is using GigaCrete green building products to construct a home that “produces the energy it uses,” according to the nonprofit.

“These next generation green building materials come in components, pre-engineered parts delivered to the building site as a complete set,” according to RCF. “This allows homebuilders to erect the structure (including the roof) with a smaller construction team, in days instead of months. The assembly requires minimal measuring and cutting and the completed house is more affordable than wood frame structures, it is immensely durable, engineered to withstand winds up to 200 mph and earthquakes rated for Zone 4.”

Those wanting to attend the demonstration on Tuesday are asked to meet at 10:30 a.m. at 1014 Florida Ave., the school garden. Please RSVP to Rosalind Welch, 510-234-1200, rwelch@richmondcf.org.

This is the latest innovation from the ground-breaking Richmond Housing Renovation Program that launched in 2015. The program employs “social impact bonds” that are purchased by investors who want their funds to have a positive social impact — in this case to address blight in Richmond while increasing affordable housing options.

Their investment is used by RCF to buy vacant homes from lenders such as banks for the purpose of rehabilitation. They then work to pair the rehabbed homes with residents completing the SparkPoint First Time Homebuyer Program.

Since 2015, the program has acquired 17 blighted properties using funds from social impact bonds purchased by Mechanics Bank. Two of those properties have been targeted for replacement homes using GigaCrete green building products.

For more information, go here.

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