(Read more onthe multifamilymarket.)

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ORANGE, CA-The new Depot Walk project by Seal Beach-based OlsonHomes has become the first attached new home development in thestate to earn a LEED certification, Olson reports. The project is atownhouse-style multifamily development that has been designatedfor LEED Silver certification.

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Additionally, Depot Walk is Orange County's first all-solarmultifamily community and has been recognized by the US GreenBuilding Council as a participant in the LEED for Homes pilotprogram. More than 80 builders, including 13 affordable housingdevelopers, have registered residential projects in the LEED forHomes program.

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Located on Maple Avenue at Pixley Street within Orange's OldTowne Historic District, Depot Walk offers the first new housingthere in 25 years. The project features California Brownstonetownhomes, of which three are live-work units, and five areintegrated affordable housing. Prices begin in the low $500,000range.

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Bill Holford, Olson's regional president of Southern Californiain-town communities, says that the Depot Walk project is an effortto "embrace--as much as possible--sustainable building practices."The project "has been transformative for our company with regard tohow we will build homes in the future," Holford comments.

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Depot Walk's solar systems will be provided by SunPower Corp., apublicly held company based in the Silicon Valley that manufacturessolar cells, solar panels and solar systems. Olson estimates thatthe solar systems will provide up to 50% of the electrical powerfor the homes at Depot Walk.

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Olson Homes will work with Davis Energy Group to ensure theDepot Walk homes meet the standards of the Green Council's LEED forHomes program. Eleven local and regional organizations, called LEEDfor Homes Pilot Providers, have formal responsibility for ratingLEED Homes.

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