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City of Portland Awards $37,800 in energy efficient grants and extends application period


Portland Energy Efficient Home Pilot


May 26, 2009


Ty Kovatch, Commissioner Randy Leonard, 503-823-3003,

Anne Hill, BDS, 503-823-4807,

(Portland, OR) Today, the City of Portland announced two building projects that will receive a combined total of $37,800 in grants from the Portland Energy Efficient Home Pilot (PEEHP), a $113,000 grant fund created to offset the costs of constructing two homes by each builder that perform above the energy efficiency level of the 2008 Oregon Energy Code standards. Three of the six total homes to be constructed are to be built 15% above the 2008 Oregon Energy Code and three homes are to be built 30% above the 2008 Oregon Energy Code. The initial period for submission of proposals began February 3, 2009, and closed on March 4, 2009.

The PEEHP is a competitive program that awards grants to generate residential construction in the Portland Area that will provide the industry and public with information on the building methods and materials necessary to build cost effective energy efficient homes. The PEEHP is a collaboration among the City of Portland’s Bureau of Development Services, Planning and Sustainability, Energy Trust of Oregon, the Homebuilders Association of Metropolitan Portland, National Association of Homebuilders, Northwest Natural Gas, Pacific Power and Portland General Electric.

"These awards support Portland’s commitment to energy efficient homebuilding. Providing incentives for builders to incorporate efficiency measures that contribute to both healthier homes and homes that are more affordable to operate exemplifies the city’s partnership with the development community and it’s citizens,” said Commissioner Randy Leonard.

The PEEHP will also produce resources to help inform future residential construction projects including records of costs associated with constructing energy efficient homes and case studies reflecting those instances of added complexity related to new energy efficiency measures.

The subsequent round of submissions will open on May 26, 2009 and close on October 1, 2009 at 4:30 p.m. The program has been adjusted to accommodate the development community’s need for flexible submission deadlines as a result of financing requirements and tight construction timelines. Proposals will be evaluated and scored as they are received. Grants will be awarded on an ongoing basis through November, 2009. The RFP and application materials can be found at the following online location: Please see the attached information for submission requirements. Inquiries should be directed to Program Manager Anne Hill at 503-823-4807 or


Portland Energy Efficient Home Pilot Grant Recipients

Fish Construction NW

When complete, Fish Construction NW will construct a 2 unit rowhouse in Southeast Portland. The project, located in the 4700 block of SE 28th Avenue, will feature a 90% efficient gas furnace in the 15% above code house, and a tankless hot water heater and 92% efficient gas furnace in the 30% above code house. Fish Construction NW is a small 4 person company that has been building single family and multifamily homes in the Portland Metro Area for over 35 years.

Terrafirma Building Inc.

Terrafirma Building Inc. is collaborating with affordable housing developer Portland Community Reinvestment Initiatives, Inc (PCRI), architect firm eM|Zed Design, LLC and Imagine Energy, LLC to construct two two-unit row houses located at 9437 North Exeter Avenue and 5105 North Fessenden Street. The 15% above code home will feature an electric high efficiency heat pump. Both the 15% above code and the 30% above code homes have been designed with the ducts in conditioned –or insulated space. A heat recovery system will be installed in the 30% above code home to use the heat from the exhaust to preheat outdoor air in the winter. Terrafirma Building Inc. has been renovating, building and developing commercial as well as single- and multi-family residential properties for over 30 years.


Portland Energy Efficient Home Pilot Submission Requirements

Interested parties will be asked to submit the following information for each of 2 proposed houses, one being built to 15% above the 2008 Oregon Energy Code and the other being built to 30% above the 2008 Oregon energy code;

  • Type of home (e.g. rowhouse, detached house, duplex);
  • The amount of square footage;
  • Two (2) sets of construction plans 24”x36”;
  • Site plans for the specific lots and;
  • Verification of financing (e.g. Bank Note) for the construction of the two houses.

The City is seeking Builders or experienced teams of professionals, who have at least two pieces of real property to be developed in the City of Portland, and who are interested in exceeding the 2008 Oregon Energy Code standards. Ideally, the teams would construct two houses on two lots that are both comparable in terms of size and layout. One property would be built to 15% above the 2008 Oregon Energy Code while the other would be built to 30% above the 2008 Oregon Energy Code. The grants and in kind services are intended to substantially offset the cost of exceeding the 2008 Oregon Energy Code. Energy Trust of Oregon has agreed to partner with the City to provide builders or teams with assistance to determine what will be needed to achieve this result. Thereafter contractors can obtain bids to determine the cost of the work.

The PEEHP Project intends to award grants through November, 2009. Homes constructed through this program are expected to be completed no later than 6 months from the beginning of construction.

The RFP and application materials are online at:

Completed proposals will be due on an ongoing basis beginning May 26, 2009 through 4:30 p.m. on October 1, 2009. Submit proposals to:

Attention: Anne Hill

City of Portland, Bureau of Development Services

1900 SW 4th Avenue, Suite 5000

Portland, OR 97201


Portland Energy Efficient Home Pilot Partners

Bureau of Development Services

The City of Portland's Bureau of Development Services (BDS) promotes safety, livability and economic vitality through the efficient and collaborative application of building and development codes. In 2008, BDS staff issued 10,000 development permits, performed 193,000 permit inspections and processed 977 land use reviews for residential and commercial properties. For more information, visit our website at

Bureau of Planning and Sustainability

The City of Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) was created in 2009 when Portland City Council merged the Bureau of Planning with the Office of Sustainable Development. This new bureau will ensure that sustainability principles are thoroughly integrated into the core of Portland's planning, urban design and government operations, strengthening Portland's position as the global epicenter of sustainable practices and commerce.

Energy Trust of Oregon

Energy Trust of Oregon’s New Homes Program is offering its technical assistance to help builders determine what actions must be taken to meet the efficiency goals of the PEEHP. The Energy Trust of Oregon will provide support during the design phase to help builders meet the energy efficiency requirements and will provide consultation during construction to verify the performance of each home. Energy Trust of Oregon is a nonprofit organization dedicated to changing how Oregonians use energy by promoting energy efficiency and clean renewable energy. For more information, visit the Energy Trust Web Site. Contact:, or call 1-866-368-7878.

Home Builders Association of Metropolitan Portland

The Home Builders Association of Metropolitan Portland (HBA) is the leading voice for the residential building industry, representing nearly 1,200 builders, remodelers and industry professionals. Since 1942, HBA has worked on behalf of the industry to promote diverse, affordable housing options to area residents. For more information, visit the HBA Web Site. Contact:

National Association of Home Builders

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) is a Washington, DC-based trade association representing more than 200,000 members. Known as “the voice of the housing industry," NAHB is affiliated with more than 800 state and local home builders associations around the country. For more information about NAHB, please visit

NW Natural Gas

NW Natural is headquartered in Portland, and serves about 657,000 residential and business customers in Oregon and Southwest Washington. It is the largest independent natural gas utility in the Pacific Northwest and is one of the fastest-growing local distribution companies in the nation. For more information about NW Natural, please visit

Pacific Power

PacifiCorp is one of the lowest-cost electricity producers in the United States, providing more than 1.6 million customers with reliable, efficient energy. PacifiCorp consists of three business units, aggregating up to PacifiCorp: One of these three business units is Pacific Power, which delivers electricity to customers in Oregon, Washington and California, is headquartered in Portland. For more information, about please visit

Portland General Electric

Portland General Electric (PGE), headquartered in Portland is a vertically integrated electric utility that serves approximately 810,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in Oregon. For more information, contact about PGE please visit




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May 27, 2009 at 1:26 PM

For more information on economic development in Portland, Oregon, visit the Portland profile page on ZoomProspector:



June 18, 2009 at 6:35 AM


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Project Grant Team


michael vaughn

October 23, 2009 at 9:58 AM


citizens of portland will be watching these projects closely to ascertain the impact that proposed 'new construction' energy regulations will have on the price of housing in portland. will the final cost of each of these projects (including the subsidized amounts) be available to the public upon completion? if so, where will this information be published?

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Spam Prevention In the Pacific Northwest, what state is Portland in?