The cities of Austin, Philadelphia, and Seattle are among 25 communities that will receive funding from the $425 million Recovery Act to be used for energy efficiency retrofits for commercial buildings and houses.

Recipients of the DOE’s Retrofit Ramp-Up initiative are communities, governments, private sector companies, and non-profit organizations that will work together on retrofits of neighborhoods and towns--and eventually entire states. These partnerships will support large-scale retrofits and make energy efficiency accessible to hundreds of thousands of homeowners and businesses, according to the DOE. Projects are set to begin in the fall.

The models created through this program are expected to save households and businesses about $100 million annually in utility bills, while leveraging private sector resources, to create what funding recipients estimate at about 30,000 jobs across the country during the next three years.

Vice President Joe Biden announced the award winners on April 21, the eve of the 40th anniversary of Earth Day.

"For 40 years, Earth Day has focused on transforming the way we use energy and reducing our dependence on fossil fuel—but this year, because of the historic clean energy investments in the Recovery Act, we're poised to make greater strides than ever in building a nationwide clean energy economy," said Biden. "This investment in some of the most innovative energy-efficiency projects across the country will not only help homeowners and businesses make cost-cutting retrofit improvements, but also create jobs right here in America."

Overall, Biden said, the program funding was eight times oversubscribed, with more than $3.5 billion in applications received, indicating significant demand for investment in energy-saving and job-creating projects nationwide. The DOE will use data from these pilot programs to develop best-practice guides to comprehensive retrofit programs that can be adopted and implemented by other communities across the country.

The Retrofit Ramp-Up award recipients are:
Austin, Texas: $10 million
Boulder County, Colorado: $25 million
Camden, N.J.: $5 million
Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning: $25 million
Greater Cincinnati Energy Alliance, Ohio: $17 million
Greensboro, N.C.: $5 million
Indianapolis: $10 million
Kansas City, Miss.: $20 million
Los Angeles County, Calif.: $30 million
Lowell, Mass.: $5 million
State of Maine: $30 million
State of Maryland: $20 million
State of Michigan: $30 million
State of Missouri: $5 million
Omaha, Neb.: $10 million
State of New Hampshire: $10 million
New York State Research and Development Authority: $40 million
Philadelphia: $25 million
Phoenix: $25 million
Portland, Ore.: $20 million
San Antonio, Texas: $10 million
Seattle: $20 million
Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance: $20 million
Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority, Ohio: $15 million
Wisconsin Energy Conservation Corporation : $20 million

Click here to learn more about each project.