Forty Pittsburgh homes will be cozier this winter thanks to a partnership between Frost King and the student-run Freedom by Design chapter at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Architecture.
“Sixty-six percent of low-income families in Pittsburgh have to choose between paying their rent and paying their utilities,” says Alison Katz, a fourth-year architecture student at Carnegie Mellon and a Freedom by Design member. “Knowing that up to twenty percent of energy costs can be reduced by blocking the infiltration of cold air into the home, we decided to distribute simple weatherization kits that recipients could install to lower their monthly heating bills.”
The initial plan was to distribute 20 kits in Pittsburgh’s East Liberty, Larimer, and Homewood neighborhoods – but Frost King’s product donation helped Freedom by Design double the number of kits that will be distributed.
Kits will be handed out on November 3.
CMU's School of Architecture chapter of FBD developed this project to address the cost of heat for low income families by distributing weatherization kits and informational materials to help reduce utility bills. We will be putting together weatherizing kits for people in need specifically from the East Liberty, Larimer, and Homewood communities in Pittsburgh.
In Pittsburgh, 66% of working families make the choice between paying for rent or paying for utilities. In many cases, the house being rented is poorly maintained and people are unable to afford to make the repairs. As a result, the heat paid for will largely go out the window.
Through distribution of the Kits and Booklets, simple and accessible initiatives are shared with low income families. These easy changes can dramatically reduce a household’s utility bills, thus reducing the need to make tough choices about which bills to pay.
We are hosting kit distribution events specifically for people in need living in the East Liberty, Larimer and Homewood communities. These kits are both addressing a need for information on how to perform these energy and cost-saving initiatives, as well as providing the materials necessary to do so.