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The latest home dedicated by Habitat for Humanity of Tuscaloosa has a unique, environmentally-friendly feature.

Lorraine Davis’s home on 25th Street is the first Habitat home in Tuscaloosa being made with low carbon concrete. The specially mixed concrete will reduce the home’s carbon emissions, known as its carbon footprint, by an estimated 60%, according to a news release.

The home, dedicated Wednesday, was a partnership between Mercedes-Benz U.S. International, the National Ready Mix Concrete Association and Habitat.

MBUSI sponsored the home and provided most of the volunteer labor from its Vance plant.

Marc Tyson, president of Ready Mix USA, a CEMEX company, and Rahul Shendure, CEO of CarbonBuilt, both said they were “thrilled” to help contribute to the concrete construction.

“Concrete homes provide added protection during natural disasters, especially in this area where storms are frequent, and we’re proud to be part of this project that can serve as an example of strength and sustainability for other homes in the region,” Tyson said.

Shendure said the home will serve as an example for the housing industry to follow. 

“This home is not only going to make Tuscaloosa history, but it’s going to be a model for sustainable housing,” Shendure said. “We can reduce (carbon) emissions while building safe, sustainable and energy-efficient homes.”

During the two months of construction, Davis worked on site nearly every day, fulfilling her required 250 hours of “sweat equity” — work on her own Habitat home and the Habitat homes of other homeowners. She will purchase her home at the appraised value through a 0% interest, 30-year mortgage.

Like all Tuscaloosa Habitat homes, Davis’s will have a tornado safe room built to the Federal Emergency Management Agency standards. Although Habitat normally lines its safe room walls with steel, the walls of the Davis family’s safe room will feature the low carbon concrete.

The home is the the 91st home completed by Habitat Tuscaloosa since the devastating April 27, 2011, tornado, which tore a 5.9-mile path across Tuscaloosa, damaging or destroying more than 12% of the city along the way.

The Davis home is the third home in Habitat Tuscaloosa’s “Operation Transformation” job training initiative. As part of the initiative, Habitat Tuscaloosa purchased 40 lots earlier this year and has partnered with the Tuscaloosa Career and Technology Academy to provide job training for high school students in the construction trades.

Habitat Tuscaloosa now is accepting new applicants for homeownership. Anyone interested in applying should go to their website, www.HabitatTuscaloosa.org/programs.

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