GAINESVILLE, Fla. - September 1, 2003 -- Forty-four acres adjacent to the University of Florida campus will soon become home to a ìgreenî residential development, featuring homes that achieve high energy efficiency and equipment such as built-in BeamÆ Central Vacuum Systems that improve air quality in the home.
Designed by the Florida Energy Extension Service at the University of Florida, construction of the Madera residential communityís model home began this month. When completed, the development will include 88 single-family homes and serve as a showplace for green building, says Pierce Jones, who directs the Florida Energy Extension Service and coordinates work with the Madera project. Homes in the project are expected to sell for $200,000 to $300,000.
Each of Maderaís homes must be built to meet federal Energy StarÆ Program requirements for energy efficiency. The homes also will be required to meet a variety of other criteria covering water-conservation, termite resistance and indoor air quality as specified in the Florida Green Building Coalitionís Green Home Designation Standard. The city of Gainesville, which endorses the checklist, offers builders reduced permit fees for homes meeting the coalition standard.
ìResearch has shown that compared to conventional vacuum cleaners, central vacuum systems significantly improve indoor air quality as measured by reductions in the symptoms associated with allergies. For that reason we chose to install a Beam Central Vacuum System in the Madera model center and recommend it as a preferred product upgrade,î says Jones.
A recent clinical study of allergy patients at the University of California, Davis, School of Medicine found patients reduced each of the symptoms of allergic rhinitis by 46 percent to 61 percent by using a Beam Central Vacuum System instead of a conventional vacuum to clean their homes. The study results drew Jonesí attention and also persuaded the American Lung Association to include central vacuums among the required systems of ALAís Health House National Demonstration Program.
In addition to built-in central vacuum systems, other indoor air quality improvement features include installation of hard-surface floors; no volatile organic compound (VOC) paints, adhesives and coatings; solid wood cabinetry; sealed ductwork; a fresh air ventilation system and heating and cooling equipment properly sized to maintain low humidity levels in the home.
ìWe are pleased the Florida Energy Extension Service has chosen Beam for this important project,î says John Coghlan, president of Beam Industries. ìThe Madera community will serve a national model for environmentally responsible building. A central vacuum systemís ability to create a healthier indoor environment is an important part of green building.î
Headquartered in Webster City, Iowa, Beam Industries is the worldís leading manufacturer and marketer of central vacuum systems. Beam products are sold in more than 45 countries around the world.
For more information about the University of California, Davis, study, or to locate a Beam dealer, visit Beamís Web site at www.beamvac.com.
For more information about the Florida Energy Extension Serviceís involvement with the Madera Project contact Pierce Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org.