New York City will soon get it’s first passive house apartment building. The development is called Perch Harlem and will be built in a way that uses 80-90 percent less energy than traditionally constructed buildings. It will be located in Hamilton Heights in Harlem. The company behind the construction is Perch Living, while the interiors will be designed by the firm Me and General Design.


The entire seven-story complex will measure 40,000 sq ft (3,716 sq m). There will be 34 one or two-bedroom units, which will be sound proof and smell resistant, to give the residents a comfortable living experience. The building will have a glass façade, and all the interior spaces will feature reclaimed wood floors.



In terms of sustainability features the building will feature 8-in (20-cm) insulation at the front and rear of the building. High performance triple-pane glazing will be installed throughout. There will be a special system that is capable of storing heat output from cooling systems in the summer to produce hot water. All the apartments are also compartmentalized in a way that minimizes air movement.

Each unit will also have a central heating and cooling system and an energy-recovery ventilator, which will all be fully customizable by the residents. The units will feature large fixed windows which will let in plenty of natural light and warmth into the apartments, while there will also be smaller windows which will be fully operable.

Perch Harlem’s estimated energy use is 9.57 kWh/sq ft (103 kWh/sq m) per year, while the blower test, was recorded 0.6 at 50 Pa, so obtaining a Passive House certification will be easy.

Smart technology will be an option for residents to monitor and adjust setting in their homes. Among the other amenities will be a rooftop terrace, storage areas, car and bicycle parking, a residents’ lounge, a private gym, and a virtual doorman, with the option of providing concierge services via an online portal.


Perch Harlem is slated to be completed by May 2106, while they are also planning to build another one in Brooklyn in the near future.