Kettering at eTown: Energy-Efficiency in the Southeast

Providence’s Kettering at eTown provides Zero Energy Ready Home-certified builds

When it comes to energy efficiency in the Florida homebuilding scene, one builder that comes to mind is Jacksonville, Florida-based  Providence Homes. Providence Homes builds in Ponte Vedra, Jacksonville, Duval County and St. Johns County. The builder offers houses that are ENERGY STAR-, Zero Energy Ready Home- and Indoor airPLUS-certified. Established in 1992 and led by Chief Executive Officer and Founder Bill Cellar, the builder has delivered over 3,500 homes.

One of its latest projects is in the smart-living community of Kettering, located in the heart of Jacksonville’s new town center area in a community called eTown. The homes are 20 minutes away from the beach and nearby airport, while it’s 10 minutes away from a major shopping center. Other builders with a footprint in eTown include Toll Brothers, David Weekley Homes, ICI Homes and Pulte Homes.

The all-electric community of single-family units are Zero Energy Ready Home-certified, with build out of 205 homes expected in late 2023 or early 2024. As of press time, 102 homes have been built, while 144 units have been sold and 97 are currently occupied. At the time sales were released, Providence says that the project was the largest Zero Energy Ready Home community in Florida. 

Kettering at eTown consists of 11 one- and two-story plans that range from 1,500 to 2,750 sq. ft., with four- and five-bedroom options available. The homes come with prices that range from the $600,000s to the $800,000s.

Providence Homes’ partnered with the PARC Group, the developer of the entire master-planned community. Housing Design Matters served as the architect for the project, while Donna Stanton Interior Design was the brains behind the interiors.

There is no particular target buyer that Kettering is catered to, as the community serves a variety of demographics.

“The target buyer has been a nice mix of young professionals, empty nesters and growing families looking for a higher-quality, higher-performing home,” said Providence Homes Marketing Manager, Peyton Davidson. 

In addition to the Zero Energy Ready Home certifications, homes also meet ENERGY STAR and Indoor airPLUS standards as well. Some green features include an attic system with foam insulation underneath the roof deck; HVAC ductwork and system in conditioned space; a TRANE 16 SEER High-Efficiency HVAC system; a variable speed air-handler, certified grade 1 RESNET insulation installation; DuPont Tyvek homewrap weather barrier; 54 or less average “As-Built” HERS score and less than 2.5 Air Changes Per Hour.

“At Kettering we leveraged our decades of design, build and development expertise to create this one-of-a-kind neighborhood,” Davidson said. “All of the homes are being designed and built to meet or exceed next generation codes, making each home future ready.”

Among other features, the homes also include MERV 8 air filters, Honeywell programmable thermostats with humidity controls, energy-efficient LED light bulbs in all lights, high efficiency low-e vinyl windows and low VOC interior paints and carpeting.

Additionally, Davidson says that the community is the only one in eTown that are Zero Energy Ready Home-certified.

Aside from the green aspects of the homes, Davidson says that Kettering includes “architectural surprises, inside and out.”

“Forward thinking elevations were designed to meet the new demand for both modern and traditional elevations with plenty of color choices,” Davidson said. “Sleek and modern looking entry and garage doors were included with welcoming front porch and tall ceilings…. Flex spaces with lots of storage were a must. Dramatic optional vaulted ceiling at café and family room allows for more natural light throughout and views of outdoor living area. The owner’s suite is highlighted with an oversized walk-in escape spa shower and closet.”   

Kettering has received multiple awards since opening. The Royal floor plan won national recognition by the National Association of Home Builders’ Best in American Living Award for Best Green Home. Additionally, the Northeast Florida Builders Association awarded the Royal model with Best Single-Family Home in its square footage, while the Manatee model was named Best Outdoor Living Space. The community also received awards in the Jacksonville Parade of Homes’ tour.

In May, Providence earned the 2022 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year Sustained Excellence Award. This marks the sixth year in a row that the builder has taken home this honor.

“We are so proud of our on-going commitment and continued growth as a 100-percent ENERGY STAR® Certified home builder,” said President and COO Sean Junker in a press release. “Today, we are designing and building the highest quality and most energy-efficient homes we have ever built at Providence Homes.”