Recently I realized that we neglected to follow up on a Passive House project discussed in pre-construction way back in March 2010. It turns out the New England Passive House, or Little Compton Retreat, received LEED Gold certification from the USGBC in recent months. The background is this is a home by ZeroEnergy Design, who performed mechanical and architecture services, and Aedi Construction, who built the home.
New Town Builders, the company that uses beetle-killed pine for their framing, opened this net-zero energy home with an announcement yesterday. The company is the first in the area to offer a zero-energy package as a regular, additional option. In other words, if a buyer wants it, the buyer can get a home that generates as much energy as it uses over the course of a year for the right price — in this case, $26,900.
This is the first LEED Platinum home in Athens. Designed by Lori Bork Newcomer, principal of Bork Architectural Design, Inc., the 2,632 square-foot home blends native materials to maintain neighborhood context and contemporary design to suit the aesthetics of owners Lori and Quint Newcomer. Lori and Quint self-contracted the build for about $125 per square foot and, perhaps more impressively, the home uses about the same amount of energy as one a third the size.
The Passive House movement in the US was on a major tear in 2011 but for that awful split between PHIUS and international PHI. The standard seemed free of maneuvers and politics and infighting, yet now there’s something about PHIUS+ certification and a ban on spray polyurethane foam insulation. Oh boy! Notwithstanding all of this, let’s not take anything from the following incredible, high-performance, completed projects discussed in the past year that sought or achieved Passive House certification.
I’ve seen the tiny house thrive in 2011 like none other. People behind these structures — whether a tiny home, shed, backyard office, ADU, or off-season retreat — seem to have a little Thoreau inside. Nonetheless, please keep this in mind: only about 5% of the population would ever dream to live in a tiny house. Is this for you? Here’s a little round up of the built projects that we covered in 2011, in no particular order. Click the text below for more and use your tabs for hours of reading.