The non-profit, Community Housing of Maine, is now accepting applications to its Passive House apartment complex on State Street in Brewer.

What is a 'passive house' apartment complex? According to developers, it's a concept that combines energy efficiency, natural light, and indoor air quality. Development Director Erin Cooperrider told us that the energy efficiency starts with a super-insulated building, and includes positioning the units to make the most use of solar heat in the winter, while not allowing them to get too hot in the summer.

"The design team spent a lot of time getting the right balance of heat and moisture recovery ventilation." Erin told us. "We had to make sure that we were turning air over, so that we had good indoor air quality.

Community Housing of Maine, or CHOM, is a non-profit, affordable housing developer that owns about 75 different buildings. Some of the rental housing is designed for people with special needs and the elderly. In addition, CHOM develops workplace housing, which means affordable housing that's located near the city center for working families.

The new 48-unit building, situated on the old State Street School location, will provide housing for low-to-moderate income families. Cooperrider says the 'Village Centre' will offer ten 3-bedroom apartments, seventeen 2-bedroom apartments, and twenty-one 1-bedroom apartments. In addition, there will be plenty of parking, for both vehicles and bicycles. And, the Village Centre will have a bus stop with a covered shelter and a playground.

The apartments are due to open in April, so applications are currently being accepted. For more information, log onto the website for Community Housing of Maine.