October 6, 2009 — The University of Virginia's award-winning modular, sustainable design and home-building team, ecoMOD, will erect its fourth home Thursday on Elliot Avenue in Charlottesville.
After a busy summer of construction in the old hangar at the U.Va.-owned Milton Airfield, the four modules of ecoMOD4 will be hauled by tractor-trailer on Thursday morning, lifted by crane onto the prepared foundation, and assembled on its permanent site.
ecoMOD is a research and design/build/evaluate project at the U.Va. School of Architecture that aims to create a series of ecological, modular and affordable house prototypes. In partnership with the U.Va. School of Engineering and Applied Science, the goal is to demonstrate the environmental and economic potential of prefabrication, and to challenge the modular and manufactured housing industry in the United States to explore this potential.
The ecoMOD4 project, developed in partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Greater Charlottesville, features a larger photovoltaic array than ecoMOD2 and a geothermal heat pump. According to engineering professor Paxton Marshall, the combined technologies may be capable of providing all the energy needed for heating and cooling.