Sustainable Northern Communities Addition


CCHRC completed an 8,000-square-foot addition to the Research and Testing Facility that demonstrates what is possible with energy performance, advanced control systems, and sustainable construction in an extreme environment.  

The new 7,500-square-foot facility is built to LEED Platinum standards, like the original Research and Testing Facility and provides office, classroom, and collaborative space. We are demonstrating a number of renewable energy and energy storage technologies, including solar hydronic with seasonal hot water storage, a ground source heat pump whose electrical demand will be offset by solar photovoltaic, and a high efficiency pellet boiler. These systems are designed to ultimately meet the entire space-heating load for the 24,000 square foot research center, showing that net-zero heating is possible even in the subarctic.

CCHRC received a generous award of $65,000 to construct the solar hydronic system for the building addition. This includes solar hot water collectors and an experimental thermal storage system to enable solar energy to be stored and used during the winter. There has not yet been a commercial building in North America that incorporates a solar hydronic system as a major contributor to meeting a heating demand other than domestic hot water.


Alaska Water-Sewer Challenge The Alaska Water and Sewer Challenge looks for innovative, affordable water and sewer solutions for rural households.
Venetie Prototype Home The Venetie teacher housing four-plex uses super-insulated log walls to integrate traditional resources and high-performance building science.
Portable Alternative Sanitation System (PASS) CCHRC worked with the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium and Lifewater Engineering to develop a simple in-home sanitation system for Kivalina to replace hauled water and honey buckets.
Holistic Pilot Project in Oscarville Bringing local communities together with development professionals to tackle the energy, housing, and infrastructure challenges in rural Alaska.
Bethel Aviation Housing CCHRC partnered with the Association of Village Council Presidents (AVCP) to design two duplexes for flight school students in Bethel. The duplexes demonstrate the integrated truss technology and energy efficient building strategies in a hub community, helping to publicly vet these approaches and serve as model homes in the region.