PROJECT | Cesar Tordesillas, New Zealand

New Zealand to build subdivision into its largest solar project

A subdivision is set to become New Zealand's largest solar-powered housing project.

More than 2000 homes in Christchurch will be fitted with renewable energy systems that will provide a quarter of their hot water and electricity needs.

The Highfield subdivision will be equipped with technology that is already being used as part of Japan's rebuild after an earthquake and tsunami devastated parts of the country last year.

The houses will be equipped with solar panels, which experts say will capitalise on Christchurch's world-class abundant natural resources.

"So many of the properties being built are able to generate enough power to give them a stable price for power for the next 25 years," chief executive officer of Solar City said Andrew Booth.

Property developer Roy Hamilton said there is a real shortage of housing for people affected by the Christchurch quakes.

"Peopled affected by the earthquakes really need somewhere to go. This is an option that we think provides them with something that's affordable and high quality."

The first lot of homes are due to be built by Christmas.

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