Passivhaus Rainbow Duplex in Whistler

This is a follow-up with new photos to our original coverage of an affordable Passive House duplex located near an affluent ski resort in British Columbia.  Referred to as the Rainbow Duplex, the home was designed by Marken Projects and built by Durfield Constructors with a high-performance, panelized prefab system by BC Passive House.

Located at 8448 Bear Paw Trail in Whistler, the new duplex uses up to 90 percent less energy for heating, cooling, and building operation than a standard house.  That being said, chasing performance didn’t stop the project team from also complying with the affordability requirements of Whistler’s Price Restricted House Initiative.

Each side of Rainbow Duplex includes about 1,500 square feet plus an unfinished basement with four bedrooms and two bathrooms.

Rainbow Duplex is the “first Passive House to be solely constructed in B.C. using primarily local products,” according to a recent statement.  Pre-certification review was completed last year, and Alexander Maurer of Marken Projects is waiting for Passive House certification from the international office located in Darmstadt, Germany.

This high-performance home has R47 walls, an R60 roof, cross-laminated timber floors and deck, solar hot water, a Zehnder HRV, sub-soil heat exchanger, Mitsubishi mini-split heat exchanger, triple-pane wood windows, and bamboo floors, to name just a few products and materials.

Update 04/10/12: In reference to pricing, I’m told by the architect that anything below $300 per square foot in Whistler is considered affordable with single-family homes ranging between ~$600,000 and $9,000,000.  This duplex came in at about $250 per square foot, which math puts at around $750,000.  Marken Projects is working on five other Passive House projects with the same or similar system as Rainbow Duplex and a cost of construction between $180-$200 per square foot.

[+] More about the Whistler Passive House in British Columbia.

Credits: Durfeld Constructors. 


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  • http://www.RLKBuilders.com/ Bob @ Yorkville Decks

    Looks amazing. Well done. Who has to climb on the roof to clean off the solar rigs in the snow. LOL. I can’t get past the wood floor in front of the windows. I would be MIA for days on that walk out.

  • Contempo Space

    love the contrast between the grey and the natural wood finish

  • Harold Orr

    Very nice!! What took you so long? We did this with a new hoime in 1978 and with a retrofit in 1982. See
    http://www.nrc-cnrc.gc.ca/obj/irc/doc/pubs/ir/ir540/ir540.pdf

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