Passive House in NYC by Alison Gregor
Sunday’s New York Times featured a great article on Passive House retrofits and new construction in New York City.
Now, with a few dozen homes and small projects built or retrofitted to passive house, these buildings appear poised to enter the city’s housing market in a much bigger way. Large projects delivering hundreds of new passive units to market are in the works, and city officials are watching closely.
Passive buildings maintain a comfortable interior climate without large heating and cooling systems — that means no more radiators or air-conditioning units for these homes. This is done using, among other things, an airtight building envelope, and a system that exchanges interior and exterior air, usually an energy recovery ventilator. In New York, very small heating and cooling systems are generally included in passive homes.
A house built to passive standards uses less than a quarter of the energy of traditional power, which developed the standard in Germany. Besides lower energy bills, benefits include quiet interiors because of thick, insulated walls, along with fresher, cleaner air, thanks to the filters in energy recovery ventilators. Builders and residents of passive houses say the filters can help eliminate allergies and asthmatic symptoms.
Read the entire article here.