If you liked the charming rustic quality of Hefferlin + Kronenberg Architects' Tellico Cabin in Tennessee, you’ll also be impressed by their Fairmount Avenue Townhomes in Chattanooga. The 18 unit, LEED Platinum-certified low income housing development was inspired by vernacular architecture common to the American South. The sustainable and affordable housing solution was one of 36 US projects selected to receive grants from the 2009 American Economic Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
The development comprises nine three bedroom units at 1,383 square feet and nine two bedroom units at 1,103 square feet. All are organized in clusters of four and additionally connected by three all-weather pathways that branch away from the main pedestrian circulation system. Each of the two-story houses has a sloping roof, perfectly angled for photovoltaic panels.
The exterior paving was designed to capture stormwater and minimize runoff. The water comes down from the metal Kynar-coated roofs into a cistern that feeds an automatic sprinkler system. Besides that, the project boasts a variety of passive sustainable strategies. The shape and orientation of the roofs provides attic insulation and maximizes access of natural light. And no less than 189 photovoltaic panels attached to the roofs meet roughly 10 percent of the owners’ total electrical needs.