Transferring Effective Multifamily Energy Programs to Communities in Greater Minnesota

The Center for Energy and the Urban Environment (CEUE) has conducted extensive research in multifamily (five-plus unit) buildings since 1981. This research has resulted in the identification of many appropriate strategies for improving multifamily buildings' energy efficiency. Parallel to these research efforts, CEUE has spent considerable time and resources developing an effective program to successfully deliver these strategies to the multifamily sector. CEUE's multifamily programs focus on overcoming the many barriers to energy conservation in the multifamily sector, which include building owners' skepticism of claimed benefits for recommended strategies, lack of financial resources to implement recommended measures, difficulties associated with finding and hiring an appropriate contractor, and issues of quality control. CEUE has overcome these barriers by developing programs which combine proven technologies with contractors extensively trained in the proper installation of conservation measures. Participants in the programs have achieved lower energy costs for their multifamily buildings and improved comfort levels for their residents.

CEUE recognized that the research and program technologies that CEUE has successfully applied in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area should be made available for implementation in all multifamily buildings throughout Minnesota. However, most of these energy efficiency technologies were not widely known beyond the research community, so this data was not accessible to the building owners and contractors who could put this information into immediate and effective use.

The purpose of the Multifamily Technology Transfer Project was to ensure implementation of proven energy efficiency improvements in multifamily buildings in greater Minnesota. The geographic focus of the project was outside of the seven county metro area which in the past has not had access to these strategies or this information. The Technology Transfer Project was not limited to recommending specific building improvement measures, but delivered a complete program which local service providers could offer as a one-stop service for multifamily owners and management companies. 

Full report (PDF)
Transferring Effective Multifamily Energy Programs to Communities in Greater Minnesota