News, The Birches at Chambers

The Birches gets ‘green’ recognition

KINGSTON — As Ulster County’s population ages and energy resources grow scarcer and more expensive, there will be a need for more affordable housing, especially for those on a fixed income and the working public.

The Birches at Chambers in the town of Ulster is a 62-unit senior affordable housing complex and is the first multi-unit facility in the Hudson Valley to be given a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) award for its green building technology.

Willie Janeway, regional director for the state Department of Environmental Conservation, said that as housing remains in demand for baby boomers and the workforce, The Birches at Chambers fits the bill.

“The state is encouraging and doing all it can to support housing such as the housing we are celebrating today that is affordable for seniors and is also built ‘green,’” he said.

Steve Aaron, founder and managing partner of Birchez Associates, which operated The Birches at Chambers, thanked U.S. Rep. Maurice Hinchey, D-Hurley, and Ulster  County Executive Michael Hein for helping to create a climate that’s conducive to going green on a mass scale.

Hein, in turn, praised Aaron’s efforts to combine pressing needs to build more affordable housing that have minimal impact on the environment.

“It’s an enormous undertaking that you’re meeting the highest standards of building (technology),” Hein said.

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