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Apr 6th, 2020

OCH research project to save energy and update older townhomes

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Ottawa Community Housing is working on a research project that can help renew four older townhomes, while making them more energy efficient.

The project is nicknamed PEER, which stands for Prefabricated Exterior Energy Retrofit. OCH is working with Natural Resources Canada on this pilot. The project will create a new building envelope for four, aging townhomes at 197-203 Presland Avenue.

As a result of the retrofit, the four homes will get an electrical upgrade, a new roof, new windows and a bank of 35-kilowatt solar panels that will produce 40,000 kWh annually – about as much as it takes to power four homes each year.

The solar panels combined with the electricity that will be saved by the upgrades will mean the building will produce as much energy as it consumes – making it net zero – the gold standard of environmental design.

Work on the electrical upgrades is began in April. Installation of the 9-foot by 20-foot panels that will go over the existing exterior walls began in June. Work on the roof began in July.

If successful, the pilot will pave the way for similar projects in other OCH communities.