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Passive House NW Regional Meeting

Last Friday, three of us from The Artisans Group attended the first regional meeting of Passive House Northwest. (Randy Foster, Owner, Tessa Smith PH Consultant, and me Zeta Kelly, Marketing Director.)

(If you are up on these standards, skip this note in italics: Passive House standards, out of Germany, are the most rigorous energy efficiency building standards in the industry today (not to be confused with a passive solar home). A home built to Passive House standards can be certified once the completed building performance is measured and verified. As a result of energy efficient design, a Passive House does not need a central heating system, it can be heated by the occupants and appliances within. In most cases, the heating energy costs are cut by 75-90% compared to a comparable code built home.)

The momentum that is occurring with Passive House Design is remarkable. We had an opportunity to view Passive House designs by other designers in our region; it was stimulating to see the variety of styles. We also presented three designs that we currently have in development, see the images on this page.

The subjects presented were a splendid cross section of the most critical pieces of what goes into designing a Passive House and the kick off speaker was Katrin Klingenberg, Executive and Technical Director of the Passive House Institute US (PHIUS), she gave a perfect overview of all things Passive House, which got us all in the right frame of mind. The other topics covered were about structural considerations, air infiltration, window technologies, HVAC, environmental impacts, the software used to model Passive House design and rounding out the day was a contractor from Oregon who is in the process of wrapping up the construction of a Passive House. Real world information.. we all loved that!

Passive House design is certainly at the leading edge of the evolution of energy efficient building design. No doubt about that.