Development and Monitoring of a Sustainable Affordable Housing Community in Southwest Florida Gulf Coast University

EPA Grant Number: SU833555
Title: Development and Monitoring of a Sustainable Affordable Housing Community in Southwest Florida Gulf Coast University
Investigators: Fitch, John
Institution: Florida Gulf Coast University
EPA Project Officer: Page, Angela
Phase: I
Project Period: August 31, 2007 through July 31, 2008
Project Amount: $9,985
RFA: P3 Awards: A National Student Design Competition for Sustainability Focusing on People, Prosperity and the Planet (2007) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Pollution Prevention/Sustainable Development , P3 Challenge Area - Built Environment , P3 Awards , Sustainability


The objectives of this project are: 1) to integrate life cycle affordability, low capital costs, low environmental impacts, high energy efficiency, energy conservation, hurricane safety/security, universal design, low yard maintenance, low water use, and use of native and edible yard landscapes technologies into the construction of an affordable, sustainable community; 2) to provide residents with training in the sustainable technologies used in home and yard landscape design through workshops, newsletters, owners manuals for adults and children in English and Spanish; 3) to monitor the above community in comparison to a nearby affordable conventional community to assess energy and water use and related costs; 4) to apply monitoring results in the design of a second sustainable affordable community to be built in the near future; 5) to involve undergraduate and graduate students at FGCU in every phase of the project from sustainable design to training and education of residents to translation of “owners manuals” into Spanish to monitoring and the application of monitoring results into a second sustainable affordable community.


The proposed study design is based on the P3 concept. Specifically, people will benefit from affordable houses with lowered indoor pollution, increased hurricane safety, increased energy efficiency, universal design, and a healthy and productive yard. Prosperity will be achieved by decreased energy and water costs, life cycle affordability in building products, lower insurance rates due of increased security and hurricane protection, and lower yard maintenance costs.

Expected Results:

The planet will be improved due to less energy and therefore lowered carbon production, less water use in yards, greater use of native plant species in yards, and less runoff pollution from yards.

Supplemental Keywords:

affordable housing, sustainable home design, energy conservation, sustainable landscaping, urban runoff, environmental science, monitoring, Southwest Florida,

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final