ICF walls keep PulteGroup up with the Joneses in solar-powered town

PulteGroup and Ford Motor are testing the F-150 Intelligent Backup Power system’s capacity to keep the lights on in the event of an area power outage.

One of the nation’s largest builders has turned to insulating concrete forms for two homes in Babcock Ranch, a solar power-oriented community outside of Fort Myers, Fla. Ahead of listings, Atlanta-based PulteGroup unveiled the models last month to test the energy performance of R-22 rated ICF walls paired with “the latest advancements in sustainable new home technologies and innovations.” 

Florida Power & Light will collect, analyze and compare the 2,400-sq.-ft. and 3,600-sq.-ft. energy consumption data of the homes, built along Babcock Ranch’s “Innovation Way,” to pinpoint the most relevant and impactful innovations in sustainability. Analysis of data collected over the next two years will afford PulteGroup perspective on which features and combinations are viable on a larger scale.

“At Innovation Way, we are making the future right at home with cutting-edge technology and homebuilding strategies that represent a new era of smart, comfortable, healthy and sustainable living,” says PulteGroup CEO Ryan Marshall. “The performance of these homes will provide valuable insight into how we innovate our homes and delight buyers well into the future.”

In addition to ICF wall construction and companion energy-wise features, the Innovation Way homes integrate with the new, all-electric Ford F-150 Lightning truck to create backup power and energy management solutions. A fully charged F-150 Lightning can provide a Pulte home with power for up to three days during an outage, or as long as 10 days when used in conjunction with rationing or solar power. The truck can also optimize energy usage when bidirectional power is combined with other lower carbon energy sources.