Welsh Passive House Prototypes - Stage 1 Monitoring Report

Welsh Passive House Prototypes Performance

Funded by the Technology Strategy Board under its Building Performance Evaluation (Domestic Buildings) programme, this is the Phase 1, 'Post construction and early occupation' report for the Welsh Passive House Prototypes at Ebbw Vale, South Wales.

The two prototype houses were designed by bere:architects with Alan Clarke (services) and Bob Johnson (structures) after winning the BRE (Wales) Passive House competition. BRE collaborative technical advice was provided by Rob McLeod. The houses were built by United Welsh Housing with funding from the Welsh Government and the EU. 

The Phase 1 report has found that the building fabric design of both buildings met their design performance intentions. Indeed in a number of respects it has been found that both buildings have performed better than their design intentions (see the Welsh School of Architecture co-heating test results for example). Co-heating tests have a general habit of exposing serious design inadequacies ( this is almost the rule but anonymity guarantees don't permit the naming of the numerous  underperforming 'low carbon' buildings tested by Leeds Metropolitan University and University College London, for example). However both the Larch and the Lime Passive House (passivhaus) prototypes performed according to, or slightly better than, design according to independent fabric tests.

After completion of the prototype buildings, they were exhibited and opened for private seminars provided by BRE (Wales) for the Welsh and international business community. The success of these events was so great that BRE extended the period of providing tours and seminars to 18 months. 

Eventually in May 2012 the buildings were handed back to UWHA for residents to move in and Phase 2 in-use monitoring has commenced. A first year report will be published in Summer of 2013.

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