October 22, 1997

What is PATH? We are working to develop a partnership for 21st century housing bringing together government and industry to develop, demonstrate and deploy housing technologies, designs and practices that can significantly improve the quality of housing without raising the cost of construction. The Partnership for Advancing Technologies in Housing includes government (DOE, HUD, EPA, Labor, Commerce, FEMA, and DOD) and industry working together develop, demonstrate and deploy housing technologies and practices so that homes can be built cheaper, more environmentally sustainable, more disaster resistant, and provide a safer working environment.

PATH has a five-part approach:

R&D: Support more funds for accelerated research and demonstration of inexpensive, highly efficient, highly attractive housing. Link with million solar roofs program.

Standards: The success of PATH will in some part be based on utilizing existing authorities on standards for a select few products that have the potential for great savings. There are five appliance/products currently under review by DoE; Clothes Washers, Ranges/Ovens, Ballasts, Residential water heaters, transformers. Of these, the Clothes Washers and Water Heaters seem to have greatest potential.

Creating Markets: The key to making the Partnership successful will be the ability to create markets and consumer demands for homes that meet the PATH goals. The Partnership will work with states and communities to help them understand the benefits of building these homes, and the opportunities it affords the communities for economic growth. The Partnership will attempt to gain agreements between communities that PATH homes can go through an expedited permitting process.

Education and Outreach: Marketing the benefits of these homes to consumers and to encourage consumers to begin to ask for homes that are built to the quality level of PATH homes. This will need to be an intensive campaign of getting the message out to communities, builders and developers. This will provide incentives for more and more builders to want to build these homes.

Pilots: The pilots will play an important role in the success of PATH. The pilot sites will begin of developing the markets and demonstrate the feasibility of the homes. The pilot sites can also act as training sites for builders and community leaders to learn about the benefits of the technologies and as a classroom for training on how to use the technologies. Sites under consideration are Stapleton Airport, Denver (Redevelopment of old airport site near downtown) and Florida (Working with the State to link energy and environment to disaster resistance and affordability).

Regulatory Streamlining: Working with states and communities on making the code approval process more efficient and less time consuming.

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