Building a cleaner Chattanooga, one home at a time

The energy efficient homes in the Northshore are built with solar panels to supply energy during the day. (Image: WTVC)

Local companies are working together to create a cleaner Chattanooga one home at a time.

It's part of the mission of a non-profit called Green Spaces Chattanooga.

They are building four NextGen Homes in the Northshore above Market Street.

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"What we want to do with a house is make it as efficient as possible so it doesn't use very much energy, and then we put enough solar panels on it to generate the same amount of electricity as the house uses," said Michael Walton, executive director Green Spaces Chattanooga.

They make the inside as well insulated as possible by using awning windows, doors with multiple latches and designing the frame to hold more insulation than traditional homes.

Tyler Smith owns Green's Design and Supply in Chattanooga. He is building the homes using environmentally friendly and non toxic materials, from the paint to the cabinets and floors.

"Just knowing people are going to be happy and healthy in their homes, that's what really hits home for me," Smith said.

Michael says homes like this are cutting energy costs, while saving the environment.

"Chattanooga has seen what it looks like when we don't do this, being the dirtiest city in the country in 1969, nobody wanted to live here, nobody wanted to visit here."

He says all that is changing for the better thanks to a city now dedicated to being cleaner.

Both Michael and Tyler are proud their kids are seeing this happen.

"I want to make sure they grow up in a world that they're going to be able to enjoy the local environment," Walton said.

"What's nice for me as a contractor and a dad is to be able to pass these things on like my father did to me," Smith said.

The builders say you can make your home more energy efficient by using LED light bulbs and energy efficient appliances.

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