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MerryPlace Takes Gold at Prism Awards for Green Innovation.

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla., Sept. 30 /PRNewswire/ -- The West Palm Beach Housing Authority's newest housing project, MerryPlace has earned the prestigious 2008 Gold Award for its eco-friendly design at the annual PRISM Awards gala held recently at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts in West Palm Beach.

"MerryPlace is a fine example of socially responsible housing that contributes to the environment and the community while meeting special housing requirements and we're honored to receive this award," Laurel Robinson, Executive Director of the West Palm Beach Housing Authority said.

MerryPlace took gold as the "Energy for Life" Development under the "Green" category in the industry competition sponsored by the Sales & Marketing Council of the Gold Coast Builders Association. Excellence in real estate design, construction and marketing was awarded in 173 different categories.

MerryPlace was imaginatively designed by James, Harwick+Partners, Inc. to meet the Florida Green Building Coalition Green Development Standard and is one of the best opportunities to meet the critical need for workforce housing within the downtown area of the City of West Palm Beach. Sales are limited to families earning no more than 140% of area median income, guaranteeing that MerryPlace homes remain affordable to West Palm Beach residents.

Developed by MerryPlace Development, LLC, a partnership between the West Palm Beach Housing Authority and Banc of America Community Development Corporation, MerryPlace is expected to have a far-reaching role in the overall revitalization of the community. Principal funding was provided by the Florida Housing Finance Corporation, with additional assistance from the Palm Beach County Department of Housing and Community Development. Public improvements are funded by the City of West Palm Beach and the West Palm Beach Community Redevelopment Agency. Technical assistance was provided by the Florida Community Loan Fund, and the Florida Solar Energy Center. A partnership was also formed with Florida Public Utilities which provides a rebate program, energy conservation inspection and certification services. The alliance enabled incorporation of green features without a significant increase in construction costs. Other partners include Grand Bank and Trust of Florida. More than $13 million in Housing Tax Credits were awarded by the Florida Housing Finance Corporation.

More information about WPBHA and its programs is available at .
 Media Contact:
 Mark Hopkinson, NewsMark Public Relations 561-852-5767

CONTACT: Mark Hopkinson of NewsMark Public Relations for The West Palm Beach Housing Authority, +1-561-852-5767,

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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 30, 2008
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