The Community Development Authority of Brooklyn Park, a suburb of Minneapolis-St. Paul, had long contemplated partnering with nearby Hennepin Technical College to build an energy efficient home on city-owned property. Such a project could serve not only as a teaching tool for HTC students – who are training in carpentry, cabinetmaking, landscaping, and architectural drafting – but also as a green-building demonstration project for the community. And construction costs could be recouped when the house is offered for sale.
It turns out that the plan worked out pretty much as hoped.
The four-bedroom, three-bath Brooklyn Park house, completed this summer, listed for $349,900 and has already sold. With 2,780 sq. ft. of conditioned space, the building features ICF foundation walls, Dow structural insulated sheathing on exterior walls, a heat recovery ventilator, a heat pump with a SEER rating of 16, FSC-certified lumber on 90% of the project, and low- and no-VOC paints and stains. The house qualified for certification by the Minnesota GreenStar program.
HTC’s homebuilding juggernaut
But Brooklyn Park isn’t HTC’s only green-home project. A team of about 42 HTC students, with guidance from construction professionals, recently completed a house on property owned by the city of Minnetonka, another Minneapolis-St. Paul suburb. This home, notes a story published this week by the Star Tribune, also is designed for energy efficiency and will be inspected for a LEED for Homes rating, which, city officials say, would make it one of only 17 LEED-certified single-family homes in the state.
“It is a well-built house. The building inspectors from Minnetonka said it’s one of the best homes they have looked at,” carpentry instructor Bill Joos told the paper.
The Minnetonka home, built in partnership with the city and the Neighborhood Energy Connection, a nonprofit energy-conservation consultancy, will be offered for sale in the fall.
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