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Alouette Homes Breaks Ground on their EQuilibrium Demonstration House in Eastman, Quebec

EASTMAN, Quebec, June 18, 2007 — The Honourable Monte Solberg, Minister of Human Resources and Social Development, and Minister responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) announced the ground breaking of an EQuilibrium demonstration home today.

The Alouette Homes project will be built in Eastman, as part of CMHC's EQuilibrium sustainable housing initiative.

"Canada's New Government is proud to partner with the private sector to develop energy-efficient homes and congratulates the Alouette Homes EQuilibrium project team on the start of their construction," said Minister Solberg. "EQuilibrium aims to reduce the impact of housing on the environment by conserving energy and other resources, and reducing pollutant emissions. These houses will be healthy to live in, will be designed to produce as much energy as they consume on an annual basis, and will be a blueprint for the next generation of sustainable housing in Canada."

The Alouette Homes EQuilibrium house will be based on the fundamental principles of Healthy HousingTM. The Alouette Homes design incorporates renewable energy technologies that are already available on the market and new energy-efficient construction technologies. A whole-house heat recovery ventilation system will be installed to enhance air quality. Space heating will be provided through an energy-efficient combination of a geothermal heat pump, passive solar design and a photovoltaic array.

"At Alouette Homes, we are consolidating our position as a builder that will take a lead role in promoting housing that is healthy, affordable, sustainable and energy-efficient, in Quebec and across Canada," said Bradley Berneche, President of Alouette Homes.

"Since 1971, Alouette Homes has been making strides in energy-efficiency housing,. The Alouette Homes EQuilibrium project is the next logical step in our commitment to develop and grow our expertise in the construction of energy-efficient healthy homes, which will help us offer concrete advantages in terms of comfort, savings and quality."

CMHC's EQuilibrium housing initiative demonstrates a new approach to housing in Canada. It brings together the principles of occupant health and comfort, energy efficiency, renewable energy production, resource and water conservation, and reduced environmental impact under one roof.

The 12 project teams who won CMHC's national EQuilibrium competition earlier this year are now turning their design concepts into real homes. Each EQuilibrium team will receive $60,000 from CMHC to offset eligible costs, including those related to documenting the projects, testing, and demonstrating the homes publicly.

In addition, CMHC will work with the winning teams to provide technical and promotional support, including market research. CMHC will also support performance monitoring of the EQuilibrium homes under actual living conditions. The demonstration homes will be open to Canadians to view by 2008, after which CMHC will explore opportunities to advance EQuilibrium housing principles more broadly across the housing industry.

As Canada's national housing agency, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) draws on over 60 years of experience to help Canadians access a variety of quality, environmentally sustainable, and affordable homes - homes that will continue to create vibrant and healthy communities and cities across the country.

For more information, visit or call 1-800-668-2642.

Media inquiries:

Lesley Harmer
Director of Communications
Office of the Honourable Monte Solberg
Minister of Human Resources and Social Development

Julie Cohen
Communications and Marketing Consultant, CMHC

Bradley Berneche
Alouette Homes

Mario Lamarche
General Manager
Alouette Homes

News source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)


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