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At the National Association of Home Builders' International Builders' Show in Las Vegas, which is being held this week, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and Pulte Homes will celebrate the first homes to achieve LEED certification in Pulte's Villa Trieste community, a Las Vegas community that plans to seek LEED certification for all 185 of its homes.
Pulte Homes' public-private partnership, including a $7 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy, is thriving despite the current economic climate. Villa Trieste is employing a conscientious building design, solar-electric systems and centralized battery storage. These approaches to financing, designing and building green homes can help builders rise above an uncertain economy.
LEED for Homes, the USGBC's third-party green home certification program, gives homebuilders the tools they need to have a measurable impact on their homes' performance. The University of Nevada-Las Vegas Center for Energy Research, in partnership with Pulte Homes and NV Energy, received funding from the U.S. Department of Energy to develop the model community, which will reduce peak residential energy demand in the fast-growing Desert Southwest, helping to reduce strains on the electrical grid that result in higher energy costs.
UNLV researchers will monitor the Villa Trieste homes' performance against simulation models, making modifications as necessary to achieve maximum efficiency. Information gleaned from comparing the homes' varying technologies will help improve green building best practices.