Energy Efficiency in The Kingsport Housing Redevelopment Authority (Khra) Riverview Place: Actual Vs. Predicted

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Sean Collins (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:
Marie Hoepfl

Abstract: Annual energy costs are rising and threatening the affordability of public housing and are subsequently increasing subsidy payments from the government. Action needs to be taken to reduce energy consumption and to improve the energy efficiency of low-income housing. This is the case with the Kingsport Housing and Redevelopment Authority (KHRA) in Kingsport, Tennessee. In 2010, KHRA completed construction at Riverview Place of 38 energy-efficient housing units. Although designed for energy efficient operation, energy use in some of the units far exceeds projections and results in utility bills for tenants that are much higher than their subsidies cover. The purpose of this study was to determine the underlying factors related to energy consumption in the Riverview Place development. With spending decisions based on grant money received, city financial support, and annual operating and upkeep costs of the development, this study sought to provide recommendations addressing cost-saving energy efficiency measures and programs. To do this, a survey was distributed to the primary tenant of each of the 38 units. The 2013 monthly and annual energy consumption data for each home within Riverview Place was used to choose six units for building performance testing. These six units were subjected to air leakage testing, including a blower door and duct blaster test. In order to better explain why such a large percentage of tenants exceeded utility allowances in Riverview Place, this study highlighted two major points. First, KHRA should allot utility subsidies that reflect actual tenant behavior; specifically, use of air conditioning in summer months. Second, KHRA should implement education programs for tenants regarding energy efficiency and the need to follow certain energy-efficiency strategies.

Additional Information

Collins, S. (2014). Energy Efficiency in The Kingsport Housing Redevelopment Authority (Khra) Riverview Place: Actual Vs. Predicted. Unpublished master’s thesis. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC.
Language: English
Date: 2014
Low-income housing, Energy efficiency, Kingsport Housing and Redevelopment Authority, Home Energy Saver,

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