April 14, 2017

Community Housing Partners (CHP) is pleased to announce it is a winner of a 2017 Governor's Environmental Excellence Award, which was presented April 4 at the Environment Virginia Symposium at the Virginia Military Institute in Lexington.

The Governor's Environmental Excellence Awards recognize successful and innovative projects in the categories of sustainability program, environmental project, land conservation and implementation of the Virginia Outdoors Plan. Located all around the Commonwealth and from several sectors, winners represent a variety of achievement benefitting Virginia's natural environment.

CHP received a bronze medal for the Grissom Lane Apartments development, a model of low-income housing for residents aged 55 years and older located in Blacksburg, Va. that was developed, designed, built, and managed by CHP. Each duplex cottage was built to Earth Craft Net-Zero standards, meaning each home produces as much or more energy than it uses. Electricity is generated by a 28kW photovoltaic system, while high insulation values, extensive air sealing, Energy Recovery Ventilators (ERV), and mini-splits are used to reduce the energy demand on the homes.

Located on 1.2 acres, Grissom Lane Apartments has four cottages with each containing two apartments with two bedrooms. The apartments were designed using Universal Design features to help facilitate aging in place for its residents. The site was rezoned to ‘planned residential,’ which allows the homes to be more intimately arranged along a short walking loop. This site design creates space for a community garden and central gathering area where residents have the opportunity to create a supportive community.

"The organizations recognized have proven their dedication to protecting Virginia's environment, and it is an honor to acknowledge their achievements," Governor McAuliffe said. "Their accomplishments can inspire others to reduce their own environmental footprint and preserve important landscapes."

“CHP is honored to be a recipient of a Governor’s Environmental Excellence Award and to be recognized for our work to promote sustainability. We remain committed to strengthening communities on a social, economic, and environmental level,” said CHP Director of Corporate Development Kimberly Strahm.

Award winners were chosen based on criteria including environmental benefit, stakeholder involvement, public outreach, transferability and innovativeness. The awards are sponsored by the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality and the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. Additional information on the Governor's Environmental Excellence Awards is available on the DEQ website at www.deq.virginia.gov.