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January 18, 2005

PATH Unveils New Resource at IBS 2005

Tech Sets to Provide Builders, Homeowners with Systems Approach

The Partnership for Advancing Technology in Housing (PATH) has announced the quarterly release of Tech Sets, a new resource that will provide builders and homeowners direction in selecting innovative technologies and then implementing them in a systems approach.

The Tech Sets program was introduced to industry leaders and members of the media during PATH's annual "Breakfast of Innovators," held this year on January 14th in the PATH Tutorial Townhouses at the International Builders' Show in Orlando, Florida.

Housing and Urban Development Assistant Secretary Dennis Shea introduced the Tech Sets program at IBS 2005. Housing and Urban Development Assistant Secretary Dennis Shea presented the new resource, following brief introductory remarks from Michael McCabe, director of buildings research at the Department of Energy.

"The PATH Tech Sets are a series of innovation packages designed to encourage a systems approach to technology integration," Shea explained. "Each Tech Set will offer a cost-effective package of technologies that work together to improve one or more of the PATH building priorities: durability, energy efficiency, environmental performance, disaster resistance, and safety."

The first Tech Set, " Resource Efficient Plumbing for New Construction and Additions," shows how to decrease the cost of construction and maintenance by promoting effective systems integration of the water distribution and used water (greywater) recycling network.

A model of the Plumbing Tech Set, developed by the NAHB Research Center, was on display at the ToolBase booth at IBS. The Tech Set for new construction incorporates five key components: home run plumbing, low-flow fixtures, air admittance vents, a tankless water heater, and piping for a greywater reuse system.

Greywater reuse piping separates greywater from blackwater to be recycled for irrigation, toilets, and exterior washing, which conserves water and saves money. In addition, the home's wastewater treatment system can be significantly reduced.

The Tech Sets are a new departure for PATH, which provided builders and homeowners information about innovations through its Top Ten Technologies format at IBS 2004.

"By grouping technologies in this way, PATH hopes to help homebuilders take a manageable approach to innovation, and take advantage of new practices and products proven to enhance home quality," Shea said.

Despite torrential rain, seventy industry leaders and media representatives packed the townhouses for the Friday morning announcement. The PATH Tutorial Townhouses were the only demonstration homes at IBS to give visitors a unique opportunity to see both the finished product and the technologies behind the scene. The two-unit site, built by leading modular homes builder Nationwide Homes, featured a variety of innovations from the PATH Technology Inventory.

For more information:
Scott T. Shepherd

Content updated on 5/2/2005

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