Foundry Court: Five Net Zero Homes Coming to Northern Liberties Wednesday, June 20, 2012
Last week, we gave you the heads up about the upcoming demolition of the former Pride of the Sea warehouse at 720 N 4th St., across the street from Honey’s Sit n’ Eat. Whelp, demolition has proceeded since then, and the site should be clear in the coming weeks.
The plan for this site involves five new construction homes, called Foundry Court. We spoke with the developer, Carol Diament, a realtor who is partnering with Nexus EnergyHomes to build these homes to Net Zero standards. Nexus, a company that's done most of its building in Maryland to this point, will lend their expertise to bring the first truly net zero homes to Philadelphia.
According to Diament, these homes will employ a few different technologies to use much less energy than a standard home while at the same time producing the little energy they require. Most noticeable will be the solar panels that will sit on top of these homes, on top of green roofs. Least noticeable but equally important, the homes will utilize geothermal heating and cooling. This will require workers on the site to dig a hole roughly the size of dinner plate about 300' into the earth. Most importantly though, the buildings will have an extremely tight envelope, keeping the indoor air inside and keeping outdoor air outside.
What does everyone think of the look of these homes? Typically, when we think of ultra-green homes, we imagine more contemporary aesthetics- it's interesting to see these principles applied with more traditional architecture.
According to Diament, the homes will cost about 5% more to build than a standard new construction home, but buyers will receive a tax credit of about $20K at settlement to make up for the price difference. Groundbreaking on the homes is expected at the end of July or the beginning of August, and the homes will likely be listed in the $600-700K range.
Certainly an exciting development, and a tremendous improvement over what's there right now. We'll be sure to provide updates as this project moves along.