475 Project Spotlight: Traveler's Rest

Colorado's Best New Green Home

Traveler's Rest - 2014 Best New Green Home, with Passive House airtightness and energy performance, and 15kw solar array.

Framing the house - airtight exterior sheathing with Tescon Vana

When we think about Colorado, we think about its world-class skiing, the mile-high city, sunny days in Boulder, microbreweries, and red rocks. But Coloradans now have another thing to be proud of: being leaders in progressive, Passive House building design. In a land somewhat defined by its contrasts, the Travelers Rest Passive House in Weld County, Colorado proudly makes its mark amongst unsightly gas wells and fracking rigs with its low-energy design, local materials, and craftsmanship. We were thrilled to help Cody Farmer and his company Mainstream Corporation with our Pro Clima tapes to achieve his goals for Passive House airtightness and energy efficiency. With a 15kw solar array and dramatically reduced demands for heating and cooling, this house proves that we don't have to rely on fossil fuels to operate our buildings, and that dramatically reducing the energy demands of a home (with the remainder supplied by renewables) is the best way to get there.

Mainstream Corporation is a local Colorado distributor of PRO CLIMA tapes and membranes for airtight, high performance assemblies, and is a local go-to resource for all things 475.  Contact Cody for support with PRO CLIMA products, LUNOS decentralized heat recovery fans, GUTEX wood fiberboard insulation, and LAMILUX and FAKRO triple pane skylights.

Sealing penetrations with Roflex EPDM rubber gaskets and Tescon Vana tape.

About the project:

Traveler’s Rest is a highly custom Passive House that breaks the mold on custom performance building. Recently awarded Best New Green Home by Colorado Green Building Guild in 2014, Traveler’s Rest is 6,800 sqft. and cost $230/sqft to build. Boasting common Rocky Mountain Architecture, Halcyon Design and MainStream designed and built Traveler’s Rest to accommodate 3 different lifestyles and generations. With a final blower door measuring airtightness at 0.34 ACH50, and a -12 HERS Rating, Traveler’s Rest is currently being evaluated for Passive House Certification, and inspires many currently looking at building to IRC 2012, or the DOE Zero Energy Ready Home.


TR boasts miles of Front Range views and wildlife including the once endangered Bald Eagle. Sustainability and efficiency were paramount because the owner didn’t want to be dependent on rising gas or electric costs. Passive House building design provided the foundation for the micro heating, cooling and electricity loads of the building all-the-while maximizing interior air quality and comfort. In addition, in freezing conditions, if the sun doesn't shine and the power is out a Passive House will sustain internal comfort 3-4 days longer than buildings built to current code requirements. To quote Cody, "Neighbors should locate the nearest Passive House owner and befriend them."

The blower door tests showed hugely successful airtightness measures, coming to .34ACH50.

Check out some of the pictures of the taped OSB with Tescon Vana.  Why did Cody choose Tescon Vana for all of his airsealing?  Because it's come out on top out of 10 tapes tested and in the German test.de, it gives you a VOC-free airsealing solution, and it's age-tested for longevity.  Also check out this video of the project the day before move-in.

Making window connection details airtight with Tescon Vana, interior and exterior waterproof airsealing tape.

Link To details
Click here to see a full-size detail.

More details on Traveler's Rest:

  • European tilt turn triple glazed wood aluminum clad windows & doors
  • Locally sourced natural stone and Dryvit stucco exterior cladding
  • Roof- 30% reflective standing seam
  • Roof drainage centrally collected and re-diverted through natural Colorado landscape
  • Initial Air Test at .46 ach @50Pa
  • R-52.5 Wall assembly
  • R-45 Subsoil Wall
  • R-16 Under slab
  • R-87 Attic
  • 15 kw Photovoltaic solar system
  • 20 kw Backup generator
  • Whole home fire suppression system
  • Pro Clima air sealing system
  • Air Pohoda ERV technology
  • Home Springs water filtration
  • 2.5 Ton Geo Thermal HVAC with D-sup
  • 80 Gallon Heat Pump water heater
  • 80 Gallon Side arm hot water storage
  • 99% LED lighting systems
  • All energy star appliance packages

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