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Solar Decathlon: A sneak peek at the houses

Sept. 9, 2011, 7:07 a.m.
University of Calgary, Technological Residence, Traditional Living (TRTL)

Photo: DOE

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University of Calgary, Technological Residence, Traditional Living

Teams hailing from the Great Green North have proven to be fierce competitors at past Solar Decathlons (2009 saw the double threat of  Team Alberta and Team Ontario/BC) and this year is no different with the University of Calgary's TRTL (Technological Residence, Traditional Living) duking it out against teams from North America and further afield. Developed in partnership with Southern Alberta's 7 Treaty Native communities, TRTL is an affordable, thoughtfully designed two-bedroom dwelling that "respects the value of culture in promoting sustainability." As the name suggests, TRTL melds elements both technological (a rounded 8.3kW solar array, energy monitoring system, highly efficient appliances) and traditional (tipi-influenced form, local and natural materials and colors, communal gathering spaces and a strong connection to the land).