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December 14, 2011

Onion Flats to Develop Net Zero Energy Mixed-Use Community in East Falls

By Veronica Grecu, Associate Editor

Local developer Onion Flats was chosen by the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority (PRA) to build a 128,444-square-foot mixed-use complex in East Falls. “The Ridge” is projected to be the first Passive House Certified and Net-Zero-Energy mixed-use community in the city and the largest of this kind in the country, according to the Philadelphia Business Journal. In order to achieve net zero energy consumption and net zero carbon emissions annually, Onion Flats proposed a state-of-the-art plan calling for all energy required for heating, cooling, lighting and domestic hot water to be generated on site by a Solar PV array.

The $26 million project has been designed by architectural firm Plumbob LLC. The Ridge will feature 126 one- and two-bedroom apartments in a five-story building over 8,700 square feet of retail space located along Ridge Avenue and Calumet Street. It will include 138 parking spaces.

According to The Montgomery News, the project also calls for a 20,000-square-foot garden and a 100 percent pervious site with a green roof for storm water management. The residential building will offer interior bicycle storage for tenants, as well as parking lots for Zip Cars and charging ports for electric automobiles. Also included in the developer’s proposal is an energy monitoring system accessible online by all residents who wish to track their daily, monthly and annual energy consumption.

Set to break ground in January 2013, the estimated completion date is April 2014.

Illustration courtesy of East Falls Community website

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