MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The city wants to build 100 green homes on city-owned vacant lots in north Minneapolis over the next five years, but it needs ideas and proposals from developers first.

Earlier this year, the city announced the housing program known as Green Homes North. The program looks to provide developers with up to $3 million in loans and grants to construct sustainable homes with local minority and women contractors and workers while using locally-sourced green products.

“We have built green homes with our partners in North Minneapolis, and they’ve been a huge success, so now we’re taking that experiment to scale,” said Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak. “Green Homes North will provide another boost of confidence for the housing market, the building trades and the neighborhood.”

Developer proposals are due on Aug. 15.

Funding for the program will be provided by the city, Minnesota Housing Finance Agency and the Family Housing Fund. The three organizations will provide $1 million in grants and up to $2 million in loans to both nonprofit and private developers with demonstrated experience and skill, the city said.

“Green Homes North is the next step in the City’s aggressive ongoing efforts to rebuild neighborhoods impacted by foreclosures,” said Tom Streitz, the city’s director of housing policy and development. “We are seeing great progress in restoring our housing … as evidenced by the recent increases in home sale prices in the city and this will help build on that trend.”

Developer proposals will be reviewed by a design committee and the neighborhood where the home is to be located, the city said. Proposals that minimize subsides, are energy efficient, provide quality design and sustainability will be highlighted in the selection process.

For more information on Green Homes North, go to the city’s website.

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