Residence Eight is the very first home certified by the Passive House Institute U.S. in the state of Colorado. What’s more, it’s the first certified Passive House by a production builder in the U.S.
By studying the home’s energy requirements before the design phase began, everyone knew the goals and planning proceeded smoothly.
“The average house construction involves 30 to 35 different trades,” says Brian Stamm, manager of production planning at Brookfield. “You have to communicate very clearly to everyone involved,” from draftsmen to component suppliers."
Glazing drove many of the aesthetic decisions. But because of the super-high performance windows chosen, the design team got to add more windows than they thought.
Planning ahead is crucial: Shoehorning performance into a project after the fact results in frustration and missed opportunities.
“Participating with Passive House allowed us to broaden our perspectives and to strut a bit,” says Jerry Gloss, principal at KGA.
Everyone involved with Colorado's first certified Passive House came away from the project with an increased sense of urgency.
The home's design is less boxy than other such houses. The only clue to its being a Passive House is that it has fewer windows than other neighboring homes.
The floor plan uses classic elements; making a Passive House more familiar-feeling. A traditional master bedroom is set over the garage; and a small portion of insulated roof on the first floor is offset from the walls. Traditional design moves added complexity to energy modeling and calculations; but the design value was important.
In addition to being Colorado's first certified Passive House, Residence Eight is the first certified Passive House built by a production builder.