Frederick, Maryland, located in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, was nicknamed “The Emerald City” by State Governor Martin O'Malley during a ceremony on August 29 honoring Nexus Energy Homes—the net-zero builder of the new North Pointe Geosolar Community.
Nexus, based in Stevensville, Maryland, has received the highest level of recognition—Emerald Certification— from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Research Center for the North Pointe project.
Each of the 55 homes in the North Pointe, located in downtown Frederick, offers a number of features that reduces environmental impact and enable the resident(s) to save energy, water, and money—among them:
- Environmentally friendly building materials and recycled content finishes
- Super insulated building shell
- Grid-tied solar panels for net-metering
- Geothermal heating and cooling
- An energy efficient hot water system
- Total- recovery ventilation and a whole-house HEPA filtration system
- Energy saving LED and fluorescent lights
- The NexusVison proprietary home communication system / smart house system
The result of combining these features provides the homebuyer with the benefit of federal tax credits and state grants, and a home that generates most,—if not all—of its electric energy needs. The North Pointe homes are between 1,300 square feet and 2,850 square feet and are “sensibly priced” between $264,000 and $360,000.
“There’s no more powerful place in our state than a family’s home ,” said Governor O’Malley at the ceremony (see video), “What [Nexus has] done is made that place even more empowering—a place that produces power and, at the end of the day, puts that energy back on the grid. Homeowners here are comparing their utility bills and seeing numbers as low as $3 or $5.…What’s more, to be able to raise their kids in a home where the air is green—and where you can’t hear the traffic going by outside while you read a bedtime story—is a wonderful thing.”
The Governor remarked that Nexus is helping Maryland reach its strategic policy goals by building infrastructure “that creates a positive impact on the people, the environment, and the economy.” After touring a model home, O’Malley said, “I am just hugely impressed.” “The homes are the epitome of innovation and entrepreneurship.”Paul Zanecki, Nexus’ founder and CEO, who accepted the governor’s official proclamation, said afterward, “We are building an infrastructure of homes that gives the power back to the homeowner, creating a more sustainable future and freeing us from our reliance on finite fossil fuels and rising energy costs.”Nexus’ GeoSolar Communities, such as North Pointe, offer “off-the-grid” capabilities that are a cornerstone solution to the problem of repeated and prolonged electricity outages. “The homes are a testament to what the combination of green design, architecture and technology can do to help homeowners reduce their energy consumption and limit the effects of climate change,” O’Malley stated.Michael Luzier, president of the NAHB Research Center, also attended the event. “Energy Value Housing Award winners like Nexus EnergyHomes are pioneers in their fields, he commented, adding, “Clearly, the home-building industry’s efforts to make energy efficient and green home options more available to homeowners at all market levels have taken hold and will continue to make a positive difference for future generations.” At the International Builders’ Show last February, the company was honored with an award for the Energy Value Housing 2012 Builder of the Year.
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Edited by Brooke Neuman