Knoxville, Tenn. – When searching for an apartment or condominium, options for green living are slim.  High efficiency air conditioning systems and Low E windows are most commonly found in single-family homes, like Clayton Homes’ i-house, while apartment complexes and condominiums usually are built from long-established construction methods, not in climate-controlled building facilities which drastically reduce construction waste.  Recognizing this void in the marketplace, Clayton Homes and Empire Construction are partnering to create a new e-living concept for multi-family dwellings.elivingplaceholder

“We are excited to further expand our multi-family modular capabilities – specifically from an energy efficiency standpoint.  Leveraging Empire Construction’s operational experience with these types of communities will be invaluable,” says Kevin Clayton, President and CEO of Clayton Homes.  “We think the awareness and importance of energy conservation is at an all-time high, so it’s a natural extension of what we already do.”  For example, the response to the Clayton Homes’ i-house initiative was overwhelmingly positive and Clayton says, “We have confirmed that there is a demand for energy-efficient green-living housing, including an apartment or condo.”

For nearly 30 years, Knoxville-based Empire Construction has been in the construction industry, with the past 12 years focused on renovation and new construction of apartment communities and condominiums throughout the United States.  “Renovation allows for the addition of energy-efficient windows and doors, as well as upgrades to the heating and cooling systems, but there’s so much more that can be done when building a new unit,” says Steve Hall, CEO of Empire Construction.  For example, e-living communities will be built from renewable materials.

RaintreeEmpire’s partnership with Clayton Homes could reshape a large portion of the multi-family housing industry.  “Our skilled craftsmen build the units indoors, each focused on their specialized area of expertise. And without exposure to Mother Nature’s elements, we can ensure the highest quality,” says Clayton.  Using the precision building method in this environment, the modular unit produces less than 2% scrap, which is 50% less waste than site-built construction.

Kevin Clayton has been touting the benefits of modular construction for years.  “E-living isn’t just a ‘feel-good’ concept.  The energy-efficient and green benefits are real, but this makes good business sense as well, particularly when you look at the savings associated with the time reduction in construction schedules.”

The first green multi-family dwelling will be located at Raintree Apartments in West Knoxville.  The e-living concept will be applied to a modular building with six units in the first phase.  Five of the units will be occupied by families, with one unit remaining vacant to be used as a model home.

“Not only will the units be built utilizing the green benefits of modular construction and have energy-efficient features inside of them, but there will also be a recycling program on property, which completes the e-living concept,” says Clayton.  The estimated time of completion is December 2009.

About Clayton Homes: A Berkshire-Hathaway Company, Clayton Homes is a national, vertically integrated housing company. Through its family of brands, Clayton builds, sells, finances, leases, and insures a full spectrum of affordable housing.  With 35 home building facilities and more than 1.5 million homes built, Clayton is the leading home builder in the country.  Visit Clayton Homes at www.claytonhomes.com.

About Empire Construction: Empire Construction is a General Contractor that specializes in multi-family renovation and new construction.  Headquartered in Knoxville, TN, Empire has 28 years of experience in the construction industry and serves a nationwide client base of property owners, management companies and developers.  Visit Empire Construction at www.empireconstruction.com.

Developer Contact
Kelly Williams
(865) 380-3000 x5337
Kelly.Williams@ClaytonHomes.com

Media Contact
Amelia Daniels
(865) 584-0550
adaniels@ackermannpr.com

To see and download digital images of Raintree Apartments, including floorplans, visit our Flickr Gallery.