March 27, 2024

S.A. Robinson Apartments, a historic multifamily development in Pembroke, Virginia, is experiencing a revitalization through ongoing renovations supported by CHP and Sol Systems. The initial phase of the renovation, involving the installation of new windows and doors, was celebrated on Aug. 29, 2023, with an event that brought together residents, community leaders, and partners who made it all possible.

CHP, a dedicated provider of affordable and sustainable housing in the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic and owner of the apartment community, announced the successful completion of the first phase of a crucial renovation effort at S.A. Robinson Apartments. Sol Systems, a clean energy company committed to community impact, played a pivotal role by providing a generous $350,000 grant to fund the project.

The partnership between CHP and Sol Systems exemplifies the power of collective action. Shaun Rai, Senior Vice President of Multifamily Housing at CHP, expressed gratitude for the collaboration, saying, “The work we are celebrating today would not have been possible without our partnership with Sol Systems and funding support from Microsoft. We are grateful for the work that Sol Systems does and for its investment in CHP and our residents.”

S.A. Robinson Apartments hold a significant place in both Pembroke’s history and CHP’s journey. In 1986, this multifamily development was CHP’s first foray into real estate projects, pioneering a commitment to providing sustainable housing solutions. It also marked a historic milestone as the first adaptive reuse project to be approved for funding in Virginia. Now, in a full-circle moment, these apartments are receiving a transformation that promises an even brighter future.

Adaora Ifebigh, Senior Director of Impact at Sol Systems, shared, “Our contribution to the restoration of this historic building, particularly the window replacements, is just one chapter in a longer story. We recognize and commend CHP for its proactive approach in seeking out different partners to drive positive change for its residents.”

Driven by valuable input from residents, the initial phase of the renovation project prioritized the replacement of windows and doors. In the months following the renovations, CHP observed an 83% decrease in air infiltration, showcasing the immediate impact of addressing resident concerns. Beyond the observed improvement, this phase of the renovation not only enhances sustainability and resident comfort for the 27 apartments within the former Pembroke School building but also aligns with CHP’s broader goals.

Rai emphasized, “At CHP, we believe that improving the energy efficiency of our multifamily properties is an important step in improving the sustainability of our entire portfolio. The recent renovations at S.A. Robinson also better position us for the clean energy economy of the future.”

While the completion of this phase is a significant achievement, CHP and its partners remain dedicated to the ongoing renovation and development of S.A. Robinson Apartments. Prize funds from the Department of Energy Buildings Upgrade Prize program will contribute to the remaining phases, which will include a new roof, replacement of HVAC units, and upgrades to lighting and water heaters (Read more about the Buildings Upgrade Prize Award). This multifaceted renovation project underscores a shared commitment to enriching the lives of residents and steering the community toward a future defined by sustainability.


Check out this video featuring Adaora Ifebigh from Sol Systems and others from CHP about the importance of these renovations.