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Letting the Sun Shine In

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Not far from East LA, the first phase of the "largest solar-powered home community from a single builder" is opening for sales, reports the Los Angeles Times. Santa Fe Springs is home to the Villages at Heritage Springs, a 54-acre gated development that will eventually house 384 residences. The units feature "dual pane windows, high-efficiency heating and air conditioning, tankless water heaters and energy-efficient lighting"—townhouses go for about $421,000 and single-family homes average about $530,000. Solar panels at a planned community—gimmick or honest-to-goodness benefit? [LA Times]