Madison Unveils New Jersey's First Multi-Family Affordable Housing with Green Standards


Groundbreaking ceremony launches a 44-unit housing complex that is both affordable and energy-efficient, setting new benchmarks for sustainable living in the Garden State.

Madison, NJ – A groundbreaking ceremony held on October 27, 2023, in Madison marked the commencement of New Jersey's first multi-family affordable housing project designed to meet Passive House and Zero Energy Ready Home standards. 

Spearheaded by the Borough of Madison, RPM Development Group, and local dignitaries, the housing complex at 28 Walnut Street aims to offer a sustainable living option while addressing the affordable housing crisis.

October 27, 2023, groundbreaking ceremony in Madison, NJ.

Key Features and Scope of the Project

Comprising 44 units, the housing complex will include 8 one-bedroom apartments, 22 two-bedroom apartments, and 14 three-bedroom apartments. Five of these units will be dedicated to formerly homeless individuals and families. Designed with modern open floor plans and high-efficiency appliances, the project aligns with Madison's commitment to environmental sustainability.

The Passive House certification ensures top energy efficiency standards, featuring enhanced insulation, Energy Recovery Ventilators, Triple Pane windows, and advanced air sealing. The project is fully electric with 15% EV-ready parking.  A 164-kilowatt solar array will make the complex net zero-ready.

Who is Involved and Why It Matters

“I think Abraham Lincoln said it best: The strength of a nation can be told in its housing. Most people don’t know that The Housing Act of 1949 established a national housing policy of a ‘decent home and a suitable living environment for every American family.’ The cost of living, especially housing, has soared in recent years," said Morris County Commissioner Stephen Shaw.

Morris County Commissioner Stephen Shaw emphasized that affordable housing, or "workforce housing," addresses the rising cost of living by providing a stable environment for hardworking families. 

"In many instances, these are healthcare workers, first responders, and others that we can call in an emergency, but we can't call them neighbors. Affordable housing, or as I prefer to call it, ‘workforce housing’, addresses this issue head-on. It ensures that hardworking individuals and families, regardless of their income, have a safe and stable place to call home," Shaw added.

How It's Funded

The ambitious project is financed through a coalition that includes federal Community Project Funding secured by Congresswoman Mikie Sherrill, the Morris County HOME Program, the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency, and other local and state entities. 

“Twenty-eight Walnut Street is emblematic of the kind of sustainable affordable housing being developed in communities across New Jersey," said New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency Executive Director Melanie R. Walter..

Mayor Robert H. Conley lauded the efforts of all stakeholders involved and expressed optimism about the project's impact. 

"I look forward to getting this project started so that we can welcome people home in a little over two years," Conley stated.

What This Means for Madison and Beyond

The unique affordable housing complex not only addresses the immediate needs for affordable residences but also serves as a model for combining housing accessibility with sustainable practices. 

"This affordable housing development in Madison will be a model project for New Jersey," said Commissioner Tayfun Selen, who is liaison to the Morris County Housing Authority.

In a state where the affordable housing crisis intersects with the urgency to combat climate change, Madison's new development paves the way for future projects that can do both, effectively and efficiently.

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