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Achieving 50% Energy Savings in Chicago Homes: A Case Study for Advancing Equity and Climate Goals

This analysis is part of a larger research and field demonstration project with the City of Chicago, the National Renewable Energy Lab, the U.S. Department of Energy, and ComEd to create a guide for retrofits in Chicago. Learn more at

Since 2020, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Elevate have collaborated to identify pathways to deep energy retrofits in Chicago’s housing stock, document equity implications and co-benefits of this transition, and validate the findings by implementing retrofits in real Chicago homes.

This document summarizes our analysis process to model advanced retrofit packages that lead to greater than 50% energy savings in Chicago homes. Based on these findings, we have also developed a roadmap with the City to guide implementation, and are deploying the recommended retrofit packages in real Chicago homes to realize these energy savings. This work was developed in collaboration with two key stakeholders — the City of Chicago and Commonwealth Edison (ComEd) — and funded by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) through the office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE).

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