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Project Update

Street view

Street view

We’ve been a little behind on posting current photos… The house was completed for occupancy in May 2014 and Jim & Emilie moved in June 1. The summer was spent primarily on landscaping and Jim intends to finish the basement during the coming winter.

From a Passive House perspective, the last remaining component is the hydronic baseboard heating system — which obviously wasn’t needed during the summer months. Temperatures have been dipping into the negatives, and even without an operational heating system, the house seems to be getting along just fine so far. If it gets a bit chilly, we’re told that baking a batch of muffins seems to do the trick.

Leading up to our second International Passive House Days open house in November, we’re going to try to fill out the rest of the construction progress posts:

  • interior framing and mechanical/electrical rough-in
  • ventilation and heating systems
  • exterior finishing
  • interior finishing

However, the Passive House-specific content will basically conclude with the ventilation and heating systems. The HRV, a Zehnder/Paul Novus 300, and the ventilation distribution system (tubes, diffusers, grilles, etc) was installed starting in December 2013 and was commissioned in May 2014.

We still intend to submit the house for official certification, but preparing all the required documentation is taking some time. Hopefully this will be complete by early 2015.

If you’re in the area, definitely stop by on November 8 & 9 between 1-5pm. More info about the open house is available here, and we’ve uploaded a few new images in the media gallery. Hope to see you there!

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3 responses to “Project Update”

  1. Nelson says:

    I saw this project in progress a couple years ago and it was amazing. I can’t wait to see the finished product.

  2. Michael says:

    Hello, it’s been a while so wondering how things progressed. We’re doing a close to passive house in Calgary and were thinking of doing Convectair radiators for heat. The company had no idea how to calculate for a passive house so I’m wondering what heating system you went for and how you calculated your needs

    • Cottonwood Passive House says:

      Our mechanical engineer (Stuart Fix) sized the radiators for us. But basically you need to do some heat loss calculations in order to determine your heating demand. For Passive House, this is done using the PHPP software and factors in all the opaque envelope areas, as well as the doors, windows, overall airtightness, HRV efficiency, and so on — as all these things affect heating demand.

      The radiators in the Cottonwood house are hydronic baseboards and the hydronic system gets the hot water from an indirect loop connected into the domestic hot water tank that uses a high-efficiency gas boiler.

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