PassivHaus design + qualification services are now available through Conway Energy for Northern Virginia
A growing number of PassivHaus homes have been slowly peppering the Northern Virginia tree-lines avenues as of late. What brings this not-s0-new concept of smart design to the East Coast? This concept has been slow to gain traction; however, the DC Metro area is a highly educated market who understands the need to cost effective, energy efficient, beautiful design, thus PassivHaus. In the past few months, we have seen more and more PassivHaus homes coming on the market as new construction.
Why has PassivHaus been so slow to gain traction anyway? My opinion is that most of the design plans for PassivHaus homes have been for big, ugly boxes. I’m just sayin’. Sorry architects, your designs for passively built homes don’t always have to be box-centric! Take for example the idea that a home looks like a concrete warehouse amidst a row of Queen Anne’s- do you think people will have the affinity for the concrete blob, even if it is one hundred times more energy efficient? Yeah, I thought you’d think that, too. As architects get their heads together with the owners and start thinking about beauty, efficiency and functionality, more and more folks are going to lean towards the benefits of PassivHaus.
Paving the Way
Since the main goals and benefits of a PassiveHaus home were identified in the wrap it up I gave you back in December, I thought that I’d give you a little wrap up reminder: “PHIUS just wants us to build highly sustainable, energy efficient homes that focus on these key elements of design: Building Envelope, Shading, Heating and Cooling, Ventilation, Lighting and Appliances, Hot Water, Renewable Systems – and I’m on board with that. The faster we get there the better.”
Opportunity for All
More and more architects are starting to look towards passive design concepts to get to energy efficiency, not only for single family homes, but also for multi-family projects. I see this as a very large opportunity for huge efficiency gains in the implementation in multi-family construction with the PassivHaus design concept. This is because PassivHaus doesn’t have several different standards for each type of building ie. single family vs. multi-family. A building is one big box, not one small box attached to another small box attached to another. The idea is still the building as a system; however you look at the building as a whole not separate components.
Now being one of two PassivHaus raters who is also a certified consultant on the East Coast, as well as one of just a handful in the United States, Conway Energy is very pleased to be a part of several PassivHaus projects in the DC Metro area and can’t wait to help bring this exciting program that has been gaining ground in the US over the last few years to Northern Virginia and beyond. The opportunity for providing this level of performance standards in single family and multi-family projects is quite an honor and we can’t wait to help our clients with this PassivHaus expertise!