Betting on Solar Powered Homes in Atlantic City

For most people, the security and independence of owning a home is part of the American dream. Enhance that with a structure that is so energy efficient it is virtually free of utility bills, and it may seem beyond even the wildest imagination.

Atlantic City, New Jersey – December 2, 2002 [] Atlantic City’s Millennia Square neighborhood, developed by the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA), offers a half dozen energy efficient, solar powered homes among 19 new single-family and twin-style residences. Millennia Square’s Phase II, commencing during the fourth quarter of 2002, is joining the dozen new homes of Phase I occupying the Atlantic City Northeast Inlet neighborhood, bordered by Grammercy Place and Madison, Rhode Island and Massachusetts Avenues. The first phase of Millennia Square, constructed through a cooperative partnership with the CRDA and New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT), was completed in the summer of 1997, and comprised of 12 single-family and twin-style homes with two, three and four bedrooms. They showcase new building technologies, energy efficiency, and reductions in the standard costs of new home construction, including a prototype solar powered home, and a residence built by Habitat for Humanity. Phase II is also a cooperative effort between First, Inc., project architect, and Gensis Group LTD, combining their talents as developers for the initial six energy efficient, solar powered single-family homes of modular construction. The Cape Cod style, three-bedroom, two-bath and four-bedroom, two-bath models will be utilized with energy saving construction methods and technology, enabling them to approach a zero net utility cost to homeowners, with the surplus energy generated being sold back to the utility company. Additionally, the United States Department of Energy, through its “PV Bonus” program and the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, through its “NJ Clean Energy” program, have provided US$78,000 in funding, respectively, for photovoltaics. A total grant amount of US$231,613 has been awarded for the project. Nineteen homes will be constructed in Phase II including the six solar powered models, nine single-family and four semi-detached twin-style homes, all with gas hot water baseboard heating and split zone air conditioning.
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