The U.S. is getting older – according to the Census Bureau, one-fifth1 of the total U.S. population will be 65 or older by 2030, outnumbering children for the first time. An aging population coupled with the fact that 88%2 of adults over 50 want to remain in their homes for as long as possible means it’s more important than ever to design and build homes that allow homeowners to comfortably age in place.
The Sonders Project in Fort Collins, Colorado, is one community that caters to 55+ buyers while also addressing growing climate concerns. The Sonders Project is a carbon-neutral 220-home community created by Green Builder Media and Thrive Home Builders and features single-family homes, duplexes, and townhomes that are net zero, electric, solar-powered, healthy, and connected.
Whirlpool Corporation is proud to partner on the Sonders Project because it truly aligns with our values and vision. For over 110 years, we have been committed to being the best kitchen and laundry company in constant pursuit of improving life at home for our consumers, employees, communities, and the planet.
Creating “Lifelong” Homes
This community offers what they refer to as “lifelong” homes, which are specifically designed for active adults. A lifelong home enables owners to stay in their homes longer with age-in-place features, like single-level floor plans, wide doors and hallways. Plus, two primary bedrooms make room for more family or a caretaker to move in.
Not only will this community age well for its residents, but also for the planet. Thrive placed a strong emphasis on environmentally-friendly building products to maximize energy efficiency and minimize negative environmental impacts. They used non-toxic flooring, countertops, cabinets, and other materials, incorporated features that promote clean air indoors, and installed Whirlpool Corporation appliances that help lower the home’s carbon footprint.
Adding Efficient Appliances
The Sonders Project features a variety of appliances from Whirlpool Corporation’s diverse product portfolio. Select products were purposefully chosen for their energy and water savings, high performance, and aesthetics. For example:
- The KitchenAid® 44 dBA Dishwasher in PrintShield™ Finish with FreeFlex™ Third Rack fits more dishes in each load, plus it’s ENERGY STAR® Certified to exceed government standards for energy efficiency, and helps save money on utility bills.
- The KitchenAid® 36-Inch 5-Element Induction Cooktop, Architect® Series II uses electromagnetic energy to generate heat directly to your cookware without spreading the heat across the entire cooking surface. A bridge function lets you combine the power of two elements into one large cooking zone for specialty cookware such as a griddle or oval pan.
- The Whirlpool® 7.4 cu. ft. Front Load Electric Dryer with Steam Cycles is ENERGY STAR® certified and comes with an EcoBoost™ option, which saves energy by using less heat and an extended cycle time.
Fulfilling this vision requires us to think of our house and home, not just in terms of the four walls around us and the communities in which we live, but of the planet that sustains us. At Whirlpool Corporation, we have a long-standing commitment to sustainability, which means we’re actively taking the necessary steps to make our own operations and our supply chain more sustainable. In the last year, for example, we accelerated our progress to Net Zero emissions in our plants and operations by 2030, achieving greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions in both scopes 1 and 2.3
By creating products that perform well and help lower operating costs and environmental impacts, as evidenced through this innovative and carbon-neutral community, we’re building a more sustainable future in homebuilding and beyond.