Community Housing Partners (CHP) developed, designed, and constructed Grissom Lane Apartments in partnership with the Town of Blacksburg, Va. as a model of low-income housing for residents aged 55 years and older. Located on 1.2 acres, Grissom Lane Apartments has four duplex cottages with each containing two apartments with two bedrooms. The apartments were designed using Universal Design features to help facilitate aging in place for its residents and the site was rezoned to ‘planned residential,’ which allows the homes to be more intimately arranged along a short walking loop. This site design also created spaces for a community garden and central gathering area where residents have the opportunity to develop a supportive community.

Electricity at Grissom Lane Apartments is generated by a 28kW photovoltaic system, while high insulation values, extensive air sealing, Energy Recovery Ventilators (ERV), and mini-splits are used to reduce the energy demand on the homes.

The Grissom Lane Apartments are so energy efficient that all eight units were recognized by Viridiant, formerly known as EarthCraft Virginia, at its 2016 annual awards ceremony and reception for being on its Top Ten High Performance Homes of the Year list. CHP was also named the Top High Performance Builder of the Year for the Grissom Lane Apartments development.

In 2015, Grissom Lane Apartments received EarthCraft Virginia’s Special Recognition Award the Virginia Housing Award for Best Affordable Housing Energy Conservation Effort. In addition, the development was recognized with an Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) Best of 2015 in Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency 3iAward for “Closing the Divide between Efficiency and Renewables.” For more information, contact: Kim Strahm,

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