Woodlawn neighbors going green with energy efficient homes - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Woodlawn neighbors going green with energy efficient homes

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JEFFERSON COUNTY - AL -  It's a community that's fallen into serious disrepair, but is getting a makeover and help for it's aging residents. New homes apartments and businesses are popping up across Woodlawn.  

Temperatures the past week have felt like one hundred degrees. Many of the homes in Woodlawn were built in the early 1900's with no central air and no way to make their homes energy efficient. Many families there simply can't afford their high utility bills. This Summer - they're finding some relief.  

"I'm very happy to be getting all this done," Essie Storey, homeowner said.

Longtime Woodlawn residents Joe and Essie Storey needed a way to stay cool in the Summer heat.  With medical concerns and an aging home - money was tight.

"For people who live here and need those type of improvements, it's excellent," Tamiki Catlin, who lives in Woodlawn said.

Now they've got a new HVAC, insulation, and double paned windows.

"It's something people would wish for that can't afford to have it," Catlin said.

The Storey's are one of several families who got the Green Home Giveaway from  Woodlawn Foundation, Alabama Power, and My Green Birmingham.  

"They'll be able to reduce their energy bills, they'll be able to reduce their energy consumption, they'll be able to reduce their water bills and that's something they'll be able to feel in their pockets," Kelleigh Gamble, Woodlawn Foundation said.

The Woodlawn Foundation is also re-establishing businesses, improving Woodlawn schools, and building new housing communities.  

"It used to be torn up but it's beautiful now, very safe to walk," Catlin said.

"Rehabbing homes, ensuring our neighbors have the tools and awareness as far as energy efficiency and continue to partner with organizations throughout the community to push Woodlawn forward," Gamble said.

While much work has been accomplished, neighbors say there's more to be done.

"If you go up and down the street you see a lot of houses empty, yards not cut - so it's changed a lot in the last 20-25 years you know," Willis Jones, Jr. said.

"The residents didn't necessarily see that there was going to be as bright of a future as hopefully they'll be able to see in  the Woodlawn area now," Gamble said.

Here are links to more information about energy efficient homes and the Woodlawn Foundation: 

http://www.alabamapower.com/residential/save-money-energy/

http://www.woodlawnunited.org/about/

http://mygreenbirmingham.com/
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