Equinox Apartments in Missoula, MT has won a 2010 Charles L. Edson Tax Credit Excellence Award in the Green Housing category.

Photo Courtesy of homeWORD, Inc.

Equinox, located in Missoula, Montana, provides 35 units of rental housing affordable to individuals at or below 50 percent of AMI.  Equinox offers a mixture of studio, one-, and two-bedroom units, each designed to be accessible of adaptable.  The overall building and site were designed to meet universal design principles with a goal of providing accessibility to all. 

Equinox is built on a former “grey field” site with approximately 90 percent of the parcel previously covered with asphalt pavement, which was all reclaimed for recycling during the deconstruction process.  Additionally, the site utilizes native and adapted plants and drought-tolerant landscaping.  Photovoltaic Panels provide up to 128kW for the site and building common areas.  The property features a “grey water” collection system reclaiming water from lavatory sinks, showers, and clothes washers to provide water for underground drip irrigation in landscaped, open space between buildings.  Efficient landscape irrigation systems include rain sensors and irrigation controls.  Further, the property utilizes energy efficient windows with Low-E coating and super-efficient insulation with recycled content mineral fiber and spray foam insulation to reduce air infiltration and heat loss.  All energy star appliances exceed the IECC 2003 standard by 30 percent. 

In addition to its many unique green features, Equinox offers a variety of services to its residents.  A regional HomeOwnership Center is scheduled to open on-site in the summer of 2010 that will serve both residents and the surrounding community, offering first-time homebuyer and financial education. 

More than $6 million in Housing Credits was combined with CDBG financing from the City of Missoula and HOME funding from the City of Missoula.  Other sources of financing include Housing and Urban Development Neighborhood Initiative Funds, the Missoula Redevelopment Agency, the Montana Department of Commerce Multi-Family Program, NeighborWorks Montana, and US Bancorp Community Development Group, in addition to funds from an anonymous donor. 

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