PORTLAND, Ore. (KTVZ) — The Oregon-based nonprofit Earth Advantage has awarded five Central Oregon projects and builders with green building awards, in addition to selecting Mike O’Neil, founder of Solaire Homes, for a lifetime achievement award for green building.
Solaire was one of the first builders in the region to secure green building certifications from Earth Advantage – including LEED certifications and Zero Energy Scores – for homes they built.
“Under O’Neil’s leadership, Solaire has been leading residential sustainable building efforts in Central Oregon,” said Rebecca Heilig of Earth Advantage, a nonprofit that certifies green buildings. “Solaire’s many low- and zero-energy homes help the region reduce its climate footprint, curtail energy demand and lower energy costs while building beautiful, high-quality homes.”
“We expect even more of these kinds of projects in 2023 now that Congress has approved a number of new incentives as part of the Inflation Reduction Act,” Heilig added.
Other local Earth Advantage award winners include Bend-Redmond Habitat For Humanity, Greg Welch Construction, Stone Bridge Homes and Bridge Meadows.
- Greg Welch Construction, based in Bend, was named Hall of Fame Builder for single family residences statewide.
- Bend-Redmond Habitat for Humanity, a nonprofit, was recognized for having the most Zero Energy homes in the state and for building the Project of the Year in the Affordable Single-Family category.
- Stone Bridge Homes, which operates in Central Oregon and beyond, won for most silver-rated homes in the state.
- An employee from Stone Bridge also won Construction Manager of the Year in the single-family category.
- Bridge Meadows, a nonprofit, built a new intergenerational community in Redmond with Carleton Hart Architecture and Walsh Construction, winning in the category of Project of the Year Multifamily.
“We were especially excited about Bridge Meadows bringing its intergenerational housing model to Redmond,” said one of the judges, Ren DeCherney. “They support the housing and community needs of youth, families and older folks while building sustainable, affordable housing using local contractors. It’s a win-win-win,” DeCherney added.
About Earth Advantage
Earth Advantage focuses on addressing the environmental impacts of residential buildings, helping move the market toward more healthy and efficient housing. Earth Advantage’s home certifications come in four levels – zero energy, platinum, gold and silver – providing a pathway for home builders to meet and exceed energy efficiency and green building standards. Earth Advantage homes are more durable, healthy, comfortable and better for the environment. Earth Advantage has certified more than 17,000 homes over 15 years.
About the awards
Earth Advantage awards homebuilders annually based on both quantitative and qualitative measurements. Some builders win on volume of Earth Advantage-certified homes they have built. Other builders or projects are nominated for qualitative awards, which are scored by others in the industry. Awards are for projects completed from June 30, 2021 to July 1, 2022.
About the judges
Amanda Ingmire is a Licensed Architect and Senior Policy Analyst at the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality focused on addressing the full life cycle impacts of the built environment while centering equity, racial justice, and wellbeing.
Ren DeCherney is licensed interior designer and lead of North American built environment projects at the Cradle-to-Cradle Products Innovation Institute. She helps the building industry translate their sustainability pledges into reality.