By Robin Wilkey

On Saturday, UC Davis held a ribbon cutting ceremony celebrating the opening of West Village — the University''s new student, faculty and staff housing facility that is now the nation''s largest zero net energy community.

Utilizing energy generated by solar panels and a series of green initiatives, West Village will produce the same amount of ene rgy it uses. The center, a $280 million project, features solar panels, smart grids, ventilation systems and high-efficiency electric heat pump heating and cooling systems.

And according to UC Davis, they are popular as ever. Student Lauren Levenson said that next year when the apartments become available, most of her friends will be relocating to West Village.

"It''s just kind of nice to know that I''m doing something for the environment by living here," she said.


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