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"New Solar Panels + Low-Income Apartments = Big Savings"

News: Eugene (KMTR)- On the surface, it's 32 new solar panels to provide hot water for the residents of 60-year-old low-income apartments. But St. Vincent De Paul Executive Director Terry McDonald believes it's much, much more.

by: Alex Drude
KMTR Eugene >>click here for original article

On the surface, it's 32 new solar panels to provide hot water for the residents of 60-year-old low-income apartments.  But St. Vincent De Paul Executive Director Terry McDonald believes it's much, much more.

"To deal with social issues, to deal with environmental issues, to deal with energy issues and to deal with affordability issues gives me a feeling that we really have found a way to come up with a nexus for change in our community."

The new panels mean a savings of close to $4,000 a year for the residents at the Bagley Downs apartments in Eugene.  

The apartments were originally built as post WWII housing in Portland before moving to Eugene and becoming student housing in the 1960's.  They were moved to their present location about 15 years ago.

Installation involved retrofitting the apartments so they will carry the weight of the panels- four on each of the eight buildings in the complex.  $125,000 of the $140,000 cost came from federal recovery act dollars- the other $15,000 by a rebate from EWEB.

Many other St. Vincent de Paul apartments already have solar panels- and others will get them soon, including the new 35-unit Lamb Building on West 11th, and the 10-unit Mill Street Apartments. 

 

 
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