Housing Nova Scotia’s first multi-unit residential building constructed to passive house environmental standards, will soon welcome its first tenants in Hebron, Yarmouth Co.
Municipal Affairs Minister Zach Churchill, on behalf of Joanne Bernard, Minister responsible for Housing Nova Scotia, joined MP Colin Fraser, on behalf of Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, today, Jan. 17, to celebrate the opening of the new affordable housing units.
“We’re pleased to work with our federal partner to be able to repurpose the Hebron Residential Centre into new affordable homes for the people in our community, including seniors and persons with disabilities,” said Mr. Churchill. “By using energy-efficient design, this project is another example of our commitment to building a sustainable environment, and providing more affordable housing for Nova Scotians.”
“Our government is investing in affordable housing here in Nova Scotia and across Canada to help create jobs and improve the quality of life for those who need it most,” said Mr. Fraser. “Thanks to the combined efforts of our partners, we are able to give a helping hand to individuals in need, and in doing so, we are contributing to the economic and social well-being of the entire community.”
The $1.6 million redevelopment project features eight one-bedroom plus den units, and one one-bedroom unit. It also includes one barrier-free apartment for persons with disabilities. The initiative was cost-shared between the provincial and federal governments through the Investment in Affordable Housing program.
“Affordable housing across our rural communities continues to be a factor for many people,” said Denise Vacon, chair of Community Housing Options Initiative through Collaboration and Engagement. “Collaborative partnerships like this one, that increase the availability of affordable units, have a tremendous impact for individuals struggling to afford basic necessities including housing, heat and food. These new units will have a positive impact on our community.”
Hebron Heights will be operated by the Western Regional Housing Authority. The building was retrofitted using an energy-efficient design based on North American passive house standards. Estimated energy consumption, including heating, domestic hot water, and building systems, is at least 80 per cent lower than the standard. An energy monitoring system has been installed to keep track of the energy savings over time.
Passive house is one of the world’s leading energy standards. It focuses on conserving energy by reducing heat loss through the building and maximizing solar heat. In addition to energy cost savings, a passive house design can also result in improved indoor air quality, increased durability of the building, and improved sustainability because of the low energy consumption and durable construction. More information on passive house standards can be found at www.passivehouse.ca.