Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Saving water, energy is king at Greencastle apartments in Port Richey

Tom Duquette explains how the eight water panels and 240 solar power panels atop Greencastle of Bayonet Point provide hot water and power while reducing usage and costs. The Water Management officials named the complex as Pasco’s first Florida Water Star Community.

BRENDAN FITTERER | Times

Tom Duquette explains how the eight water panels and 240 solar power panels atop Greencastle of Bayonet Point provide hot water and power while reducing usage and costs. The Water Management officials named the complex as Pasco’s first Florida Water Star Community.

PORT RICHEY — Greencastle of Bayonet Point lives up to its name.

Not only has the apartment complex for low-income seniors received a state award for water conservation, but Greencastle is also in the running for a federal award honoring overall green-living excellence.

Greencastle, an 80-unit, government-subsidized community at 11722 La Madera Blvd., off of State Road 52, was upgraded with conservation in mind, from the 240 solar panels on the roof to carpeting made of recycled material.

This fall, the Southwest Florida Water Management District, also known as Swiftmud, named Green­castle as the first community in Pasco to earn its Florida Water Star award. The four-story building went fully green in 2010 with an environmentally conscious irrigation system, dual flush toilets, low-flow showerheads, automatic faucets and high-efficiency washing machines. The measures cut Greencastle's annual water use by 1.3 million gallons.

The complex cut its monthly water bill by more than 50 percent, from $1,791 to an average of $877. It's the model of what Swiftmud would like to see from all developers, said agency spokeswoman Robin Grantham.

"They have really done an amazing job," she said.

Not only is Greencastle doing well on the water front but it's also rating well in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Battle of the Buildings contest, a yearlong effort in which buildings compete to make the most energy-saving improvements. Out of the 230 buildings competing across the country in the multifamily category, Green­castle ranked eighth at the midpoint of the competition. The winner will be announced in April.

Greencastle is scoring well, in large part, because of its solar panels. The roof has been transformed into an energy-making machine with solar energy powering everything from the lights to making hot water.

The building also has 167 double-pane hurricane-proof windows, energy-efficient light bulbs and sensor lighting that only turns on when someone enters a room or hallway.

It has brought down the building's average monthly power bill down from $1,500 to $868.

"The power company doesn't like us very much," said Greencastle manager Kathleen Casagrande, laughing.

The best thing for Casagrande is that the facility's residents love the idea of taking part in the conservation.

"Our residents are a generation that grew up frugally and recycled everything. So they love it," she said.

Resident Grace Jennings, 87, moved into the facility six months ago from West Virginia to be closer to local family.

"It's a great place to live. It's warm if you want it to be. It's cold if you want it to be," she said.

For Mary Devine, 84, it has meant less noise from power generators, too.

"I can open the windows now," said Devine, who has lived there seven years.

Saving water, energy is king at Greencastle apartments in Port Richey 11/15/12 [Last modified: Thursday, November 15, 2012 8:19pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. An attempt to project what Rays will look like in 2018

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — We know what the Rays look like this year: a team that had enough talent but too many flaws, in construction and performance, and in the next few days will be officially eliminated from a wild-card race it had a chance to win but let slip away.

    Adeiny Hechavarria, high-fiving Lucas Duda, seems likely to be brought back.
  2. Trump fallout: Bucs' DeSean Jackson to make 'statement' Sunday

    Bucs

    Bucs receiver DeSean Jackson said Saturday that he will make a "statement" before today's game against the Vikings in response to President Donald Trump's comment that owners should "fire" players who kneel in protest during the national anthem.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver DeSean Jackson (11) makes a catch during the first half of an NFL game between the Chicago Bears and Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla., on Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017.
  3. Kriseman invites Steph Curry to St. Pete on Twitter

    Blogs

    Mayor Rick Kriseman is no stranger to tweaking President Donald Trump on social media.

    Mayor Rick Kriseman took to Twitter Saturday evening to wade into President Donald Trump's latest social media scuffle
  4. Death toll, humanitarian crisis grow in Puerto Rico

    World

    SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — A humanitarian crisis grew Saturday in Puerto Rico as towns were left without fresh water, fuel, power or phone service following Hurricane Maria's devastating passage across the island.

    Crew members assess electrical lines in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria on Friday in Puerto Rico. Mobile communications systems are being flown in but “it’s going to take a while.”
  5. N. Korea says strike against U.S. mainland is 'inevitable'

    World

    North Korea's foreign minister warned Saturday that a strike against the U.S. mainland is "inevitable" because President Donald Trump mocked leader Kim Jong Un with the belittling nickname "little rocketman."