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Federal Stimulus Dollars Support Weatherization Efforts

OH's HomeWise Program Exceeds ARRA Goals Early

Unlike a procrastinating student with finals week on the horizon, OH's HomeWise Weatherization Program didn't need an extension to meet the original deadline of June 30 for spending American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) dollars. Although the deadline is now extended through Dec. 31, HomeWise has hit — and exceeded — its ARRA target of 1,582 units, with a total of 1,637 ARRA-funded units completed.

In 2009, Seattle was awarded $4.8 million in ARRA funds for weatherization, to be spent over three years. This money has been funneled through the HomeWise program, which has been offering free energy efficiency upgrades to low-income homeowners and renters since the 1980s. Back in 2009, the ARRA target appeared almost unattainable, but strong partnerships between the Office of Housing and Seattle's affordable housing community, HomeWise contractors, utility partners, and funders helped HomeWise deliver on the sky-high goal.

The 1,637 ARRA-funded units completed to date comprise 1,289 apartments and 348 single-family homes. Looking ahead, HomeWise currently has ARRA funds committed to an additional 571 units, with more to come.

For more on HomeWise, visit www.seattle.gov/housing/homewise. To learn more about all ARRA funding received by the City, visit www.recovery.seattle.gov. 

 

ARRA Funding in ActionLegacy House

Q:  Which project put HomeWise over the top on ARRA goals? 

A:  Legacy House, a 75-unit senior building in the International District owned and operated by the Seattle Chinatown International District Public Development Agency (SCIDPDA). 

Using ARRA and other fund sources, HomeWise installed replacement lighting that will not only cut energy consumption by about 40,500 kWh per year, but also provide more and better lighting to Legacy House's tenants. The project also funded air sealing to further improve energy efficiency and tenant comfort. But that's not all: as the project proceeded, a new opportunity emerged — HomeWise project management staff discovered excessive ventilation levels, with roof fans pulling large volumes of heated air right out of the building. A new follow-up project, also funded by HomeWise with Puget Sound Energy participation, will retool Legacy House fans so that they will continue to deliver proper ventilation without running up the gas bill.

See more ARRA-funded HomeWise success stories.

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