Local

Ecovillage at Ithaca expanding with third neighborhood

Ecovillage at Ithaca expanding with third neighborhood

Imagine a house so energy efficient that it needs no central heating, even in Ithaca.

It’s what’s called a passive home–they have caught on in Europe and are just now popping up in North America–and they are part of the Ecovillage at Ithaca’s third neighborhood.

The houses are being built using solar panels that work in the winter to provide essentially free heat.

Ecovillage Executive Director Liz Walker says the homes conserves 90 percent of the energy needed for heating and cooling a house.

“Rather than pay big bills to the energy companies, we’ll be generating our own power both through these energy-efficient homes, and through use of solar panels, which will provide electricity for the homes,” Walker said.

Walker says solar thermal energy will provide hot water for the homes.

Passive house construction is commonly used in Europe but is new to North America. It’s considered the highest building standard in the world.

Walker says construction of the passive homes in Ecovillage’s third neighborhood is expected to be completed by summer of 2014.

More Local Headlines

in Local

Report critical of New York’s anti-smoking efforts

health

Report from American Cancer Society shows New York is making cuts in programs to prevent tobacco use

in Local

Investigation continues into early Sunday stabbing in Ithaca

Crime 3

Stabbing happened before 1 a.m. on Hillview Place on Ithaca's South Hill

in Local

Reports: Karl Karlsen charged in California for wife’s 1991 death

gavel2

Karlsen is serving sentence for son's 2008 death in Seneca County

in Local

Two injured in plane crash at Cortland County Airport

Local_News41-620x400

Crash happened around noon as pilot tried to make emergency landing

in Local

Two men arrested for stealing robotic pool cleaner

Local_News41-620x400

Two men were arrested Thursday for allegedly stealing a pool cleaner from the Wickwire Pool in late July.