Canada Builds It Right

March/April 2006
This article originally appeared in the March/April 2006 issue of Home Energy Magazine.
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March 02, 2006
A new development in Okotoks, Alberta, Canada, uses seasonal solar storage to heat its homes year-round.
        While Canada may not be the most obvious location for a solar-powered housing subdivision, the implementation of a seasonal solar storage system is making this idea a reality. Drake Landing, a new solar community that has just been built in the town of Okotoks,Alberta, outside of Calgary, is the first housing development in North America to rely on a borehole solar storage system to supply over 90% of its heating needs year-round.         The solar community, funded through a number of government and municipal grants, contains 52 two-story residences built to R-2000 and Built Green Alberta standards.The development was overseen by United Communities, which invests in building affordable homes that take advantage of emerging green technologies. Tyler Stevenson, project manager at United Communities, says that Drake Landing is an innovative, commonsense approach to affordable, healthy homes. “At United we are very aware of affordability,” says Stevenson.“Although the Calgary area is still very affordable to first-time home buyers, in recent years this affordability has eroded.We saw this as an opportunity to bring to the marketplace homes where increasing utility costs would not be an issue.&...

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