In last summer’s newsletter, we highlighted the early stages of Bellwether Housing’s involvement in the RENEW Project. This initiative of Emerald Cities Collaborative, aims to help affordable housing providers achieve significant energy savings by providing them with low-interest loans to upgrade their buildings systems. For Bellwether, the program is beginning to trim our energy and water usage and reduce utility expenses, leaving us with more money to create and maintain affordable homes. We are also proud to be conserving natural resources to help keep the Puget Sound region green and livable for all.
At First and Vine in Belltown, the ventilation systems was balanced to reduce wasteful over-circulation of air, leading to 12% energy savings in the past twelve months compared to the year prior. At Cascade Court on First Hill, upgrades to LED lighting have led to 15% electricity savings over last year. Cascade Court also achieved 13% savings in gas by installing two new condensing gas boilers. The building also saw 21% water savings thanks to the installation of low-flow toilets, showerheads, and sink aerators. Kingway, in the Rainier Valley, achieved 13% gas savings after new water heaters were installed. Water usage at Kingway has been reduced by 31% with the same in-unit upgrades as Cascade Court.
Bellwether plans to update electrical, gas, lighting, and plumbing systems at five more buildings this year through the RENEW Project. We look forward to continuing to reduce our buildings’ water and energy usage so we can dedicate more resources to creating enduring affordable housing in the Puget Sound region.