Innovative Financing Program Helps Save Money and Conserve Energy
(Washington, D.C.) Today, the District Department of the Environment (DDOE) announced that that the DC Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Program has completed its first financing of an energy efficiency project in the District. The property, an affordable multifamily building at 400 M St in southeast DC, is part of the Capper Carrollsburgh Hope VI redevelopment. The total amount of the project is $340,000.
Improvements to the property included lighting, low flow water fixtures, and a 37-kilowatt rooftop solar array. This project is expected to provide over $40,000 in annual benefits from avoided costs and tax credits. Purchased energy will be reduced by approximately 15% percent.
“Through the Sustainable DC Initiative, we have set aggressive goals to reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions in the District,” says Mayor Vincent C. Gray. “The engagement of private building owners is critical if we hope to achieve these goals. The DC PACE program provides an important source of financing to help property owners improve their energy and environmental performance, and save money.”
The PACE loan is repaid through a special tax assessment which allows property owners to avoid incurring additional debt to pay for the improvements.
“ DC PACE Commercial gave the owners of 400 M Street SE, including Forest City, a great way to finance energy efficiency improvements, including solar power, LED lighting, and water conservation for our residents," said David Levey, Executive Vice President of Forest City Residential Group. "With the help of PACE financing, we are cutting our energy usage by 15% and will realize substantial saving on our energy bills each year. These same measures are also cutting our carbon footprint and protecting the District's natural environment. PACE is a big win for our tenants, the owners and for Washington, DC."
“We are delighted that the District chose to use one of our HOPE VI redevelopments as the site of the nation’s first PACE-financed affordable housing endeavor,” said DCHA Executive Director Adrianne Todman. “We hope this integration of affordable housing and PACE financing is one that can become the new standard for redevelopment that is both cost effective and energy efficient.”
DDOE Director Keith A. Anderson added: “Buildings in the District are responsible for 75percent of the city’s greenhouse gas emissions. Financing programs, such as DC PACE, are critical to help encourage building owners to join our efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the District.”
"This project is a historic first," said Bracken Hendricks, the program administrator for DC PACE Commercial. "This opens up access to green solutions to low income people. This project puts DC PACE on the map and it continues a proud tradition of leadership in the District in linking clean energy to economic development."
DC PACE is a District of Columbia program that provides affordable financing to commercial property owners to fund energy efficiency improvements. PACE financing is repaid over a period of up to 20 years through a special tax assessment on the property. The program, enacted as part of the Energy Efficiency Financing Act of 2010, was officially launched in April of 2012.
For more information on the DC PACE program, visit www.DCPACE.com.