65 Exmouth Market - Low Energy + Passivhaus techniques


This 5-storey low energy mixed-use development was designed in 2007 - 2008, as we were developing our Passive House approach and completed in 2014 after it was put on hold during the economic recession of the intervening years.

It is part facade-retention, but the Exmouth Market elevation consists of new, traditionally bonded London stock brickwork with a gritty, wire-brushed lime mortar. The two-storey penthouse at the top of the development is clad in zinc. The high quality facades contribute strongly to the enhancement of the public realm.

With a planning requirement for traditional sash windows, the development could never have achieved full Passive House performance, but the building will be comfortable, healthy and economical. We were successful in turning the council around from single glazing to triple glazed traditional sashes on first and second floors and contemporary windows in the penthouse, although the planners did bizarrely insist on just double glazing on the old facades. All the brickwork is internally insulated and thermally broken, and on testing, the building was found to have excellent air-tightness, although not to the PH standard. 

This building shows how a developer can build healthy, comfortable, economical buildings that meet current conservation area planning requirements, while also looking after the environment and the interests of future generations.