Friday, October 1, 2010

Passive Haus in Central Vermont

Today I saw a link to this video from the New York Times site showcasing an unusual super insulated and hyper efficient home requiring no heating systems in the lovely hills of central Vermont where I live. 

The Landau family engaged a local architectural, engineering and building team to design, produce and install their home on its site to a levels of extraordinary energy efficiency and air-tightness requiring no internal heating system at all.  The family was very interested in living in a home with zero energy use to not rely upon fossil fuels. 

Their home is modeled on the European Passiv Haus model now becoming more known in the US.  There is a US Passive Haus institute, an affiliate of the original in Germany. For more projects in the US, please click this link.

Bensonwood homes, one of the building team members produced and installed the exterior building envelope including frame, walls and roof systems.  They're just over the border in nearby New Hampshire.  They are on the forefront of integrating super-high performance building design into CAD CAM aided panelized production of building elements assembled together onto the site.  It's a novel approach to construction and design build which results into more control over the building process and higher quality control with apparently minor additional costs to the project.   

A take away for me is that it is possible to design and build these kinds of homes in the chilly world of the Northeastern US.  The capabilities exist practically in our back yard.


The original link to me to this great video is courtesy of Greg Howes from the LinkedIn Group"Net Zero Building" of which I belong as well.  Greg is CEO of


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