CHP’s mission is to create homes and communities that are healthy, sustainable, and affordable. Since our founding in 1975, sustainability has been a core part of who we are as an organization.
Community Housing Partners (CHP) was founded by concerned citizen activists who organized volunteer college students and faculty to perform minor home repairs for low-income families living in unsafe or unhealthy conditions in the New River Valley. We soon added weatherization services delivered by a small team of professional staff. Although CHP has grown into a nationally recognized, multi-state nonprofit today, we remained committed to sustainability in all aspects of our organization.
For over 30 years, CHP has designed and built multifamily projects to meet strict green building and energy efficiency standards. A priority for all CHP development efforts is energy-efficient design, sustainable building practices, and reduced utility costs for residents. This priority, and CHP’s expertise in green building practices, allows us to create safer, healthier, and more affordable housing for residents.
CHP has developed or assisted in over 40 EarthCraft-certified multifamily communities, Energy Star-certified developments, and LEED-certified buildings over the past 10 years. When it comes to the built environment, our best practices typically exceed building code requirements, and CHP is committed to the incorporation of green, sustainable design and building practices and components into all the properties that we preserve or create. We do this through the establishment of products and practices that shape our commitment to environmental, economic, and social sustainability.
Then & Now: Spotlight on CHP Weatherization
Our weatherization team has performed energy audits and repairs to home heating and cooling systems, especially for households with elderly residents, individuals with disabilities, and families with children. Even though there have been many changes to the technology we have used since the 1970s, the basics of creating an energy efficient home remain the same today.
CHP’s Board of Directors approved a 2022-2024 Strategic Plan that lays out organizational goals and objectives for a three-year period. One of our main goals is to adopt operational practices that reduce our environmental impact.
Our strategies for achieving this goal include:
CHP will prioritize decarbonization activities that are under organizational control through business operations and asset management.
CHP will put systems and processes in place to assist resident and clients in reducing carbon emissions.
Strategic GoalSee how we plan to prioritize decarbonization activities and help others reduce carbon emissions.
CHP is committed to the incorporation of green, sustainable design and building
Programs and Initiatives
Sustainable Path to Homeownership
CHP is committed to the incorporation of green, sustainable design and building practices and components into all the multifamily and single-family properties that we preserve or create. We have established a baseline of environmentally friendly products and practices that not only reflect our commitment to environmental, economic, and social sustainability, but also impact the health of the of the people and communities we serve. We prioritize the use of green/sustainable building materials that conserve resources and create healthier built environments including improved air quality.
Our CHP Energy Solutions team provides energy audits and retrofits to age- and income-qualifying individuals. Retrofit measures might include adding insulation and sealing air leaks, installing energy efficient lighting, repairing or replacing heating and cooling systems, sealing leaky duct systems, installing exhaust and ventilation fans, adding CO detectors and smoke alarms, and installing water-conserving faucet aerators and showerheads. Additionally, Dominion Energy and Appalachian Power Company have partnered with CHP to deliver expanded programs for their low-income customers.
CHP has a strategic goal to improve the health and quality of life of our residents and clients. Housing stability is a key social determinant of health, and in recent years, the concept of CHP’s From Housing to Home model has been developed. The model proposes identification of candidates for homeownership among the residents in CHP’s affordable housing communities followed by provision of financial counseling, homebuyer education, and one-on-one support. This is the result of CHP’s long-term desire to create a sustainable path to homeownership for rental residents—a key aspect of our commitment to social sustainability.
Stewards of Affordable Housing for the Futures (SAHF)’s Big Reach Initiative was created in 2013 with a goal to lead the affordable housing industry in the long-term preservation of its housing stock by reducing energy and water use portfolio-wide by 20% by 2020. CHP joined SAHF in January 2017 and immediately committed to the Big Reach. The goal was reached through a mix of energy and water efficiency, energy and water conservation, and renewable energy. SAHF members exceeded the 20% savings goal with a 29% energy savings and 24% water savings against the 2010 baseline.
Developed by CHP in partnership with the Town of Blacksburg, Virginia, Grissom Lane Apartments is a model of eco-friendly, affordable housing for residents aged 55 years and older. The rental community has four duplex cottages on a one-and-a-quarter-acre site. To maintain the rents as affordable, CHP was able to certify Grissom Lane Apartments as the first EarthCraft™ Virginia Net-Zero Ready development in the state of Virginia. Each home produces as much or more energy than it uses because, for the first time in CHP’s history, 100% of the units are designed to generate all the energy they need on-site from rooftop solar panels.
The Apartments at Kingsridge 1 is a 72-unit multifamily development in Virginia’s Henrico County. With easy access to the area’s largest highway system, shopping, pharmacies, and public transportation, the affordable housing provided by Kingsridge is a terrific option for low-income families in the greater Richmond area based on its location alone. What makes the apartments stand out even more is that the project brought together the various best practice and design principles of high-performance building and integrated them into a comprehensive mechanical system.
The Better Climate Challenge is a voluntary, market-based platform for organizations to set ambitious, portfolio-wide, operational GHG emissions reduction goals and showcase how they are taking steps to address climate change.
The Better Buildings Challenge is a voluntary leadership initiative that asks leading CEOs and executives of U.S. commercial and manufacturing companies to publicly pledge to improve energy intensity of the entire U.S. portfolio by at least 20% within 10 years.
From our roots as a volunteer organization serving housing needs in Appalachia, CHP has grown into a multi-state organization nationally recognized for our capabilities and commitment to innovation and continuous improvement. Although CHP’s footprint has greatly expanded over the decades, our mission continues to focus on creating homes and communities that are healthy, sustainable, and affordable.