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Ultra-Efficient Affordable Housing

Elliot Tower Rendering by Intep (Intep)
Minneapolis Public Housing Authority


MPHA owns and manages over 6,000 public housing rental units. These rental units consist of 42 highrise apartment buildings, 753 single family homes, and 184 town home units. In 2017, MPHA decided to investigate refurbishment and retrofits of their existing building stock, as well as new construction to an “ultra-efficient housing” standard in an effort to catch up with deferred maintenance and optimize their portfolio for anticipated changes to the funding environment. 


Intep was hired to most effectively and efficiently provide useful information for MPHA to make informed strategic decisions. We are combining architectural pre-design and schematic design services into a first phase of consulting to investigate and study both existing conditions, as well as initial designs concepts in regards to their feasibility, opportunities and overall impact. 


During the pre-design phase, we visited key representative sites and existing buildings, selected projects for case studies and pilots, as well as established overall project goals and targets. 


During the schematic design phase, we continue to explore pilot project concepts and solutions to generate vital information to enable initial first cost estimates and life cycle cost. Those, in turn, will provide the Client with the tools to decide on which pilot projects to pursue to satisfy the biggest needs, and maximize impact and return on investment.


Phase 2 includes the implementation of pilot projects.

Key Services Provided​
  • Building analysis

  • Life Cycle Cost analysis

  • Energy and climate impact analysis

  • Conceptual design and assistance with feasibility study

Project Details
  • Client: Minneapolis Public Housing Authority

  • Project: 2017-2018

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