August 16, 2017

Hooray for Double Standards: Passive House + LEED Platinum in Quebec

Sarah Cobb and William Murray of Construction Rocket Inc. are dedicated to bringing about radical change in the building industry. As Passive House Certified Builders, they are committed to ensuring energy performance, even in harsh, challenging climates. And their recently completed Springhouse in Abercorn, Quebec, proves that Passive House design and construction doesn’t have to compromise […]

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June 14, 2017 Ecocor_video_thumb

475 On-Site: Chris Corson on Precision, Efficiency, And The Future Of Building

EcoCor’s Founder talks Passive House, Pro Clima, and his path through high-performance construction Chris Corson, of EcoCor High Performance Building Systems, talks to us about how he developed EcoCor’s signature panelized construction techniques and Passive House Institute Certified building assembly. Chris makes the powerful point that even as other industries have made quantum leaps in technology and precision […]

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June 14, 2017 WSJ croped IMG_20170612_075607

Wall Street Journal Hears Passive House Buzz in New York

The Wall Street Journal article, titled online, Striving for Energy-Efficiency in New York, by journalist Keiko Morris, captures the magnitude of the sea change in Passive House building, in a quote by 475’s own Ken Levenson: In 2010, the New York region had about 50,000 square feet of passive-design building projects planned, said Ken Levenson, founding board […]

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June 6, 2017 SANCO2_med_combo_w_logo

SANDEN SANCO2: The Water Heater to End All Water Heaters

After HVAC systems, water heaters can be among the biggest energy sinks in a building. Although high-performance building strategies can allow you to dramatically downsize your HVAC systems, supplying hot water can remain a challenge for those seeking to reduce building energy loads. Fortunately, the ideal solution to the challenge has arrived: the SANDEN SANCO2 Heat […]

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May 18, 2017 The Boston Tea Party:  Choosing coffee wan't going to do it.

Good Products Aren’t Enough: It’s The System – So Let’s Change it.

What Are We Doing? Are we kidding ourselves? Trying to be a conscientious consumer, we try to pick sustainable materials and products – making more sustainable decisions – with the desire to “vote with our wallets” and promote “green industry” that will have beneficial effects in our fight against climate change and other environmental and social […]

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May 17, 2017 PHNE_Cover_Final

New England Forges Ahead: Passive House Buildings

When advocating for Passive House buildings it’s often not very convincing to point to successful projects in other countries.   People understandably want to see local professionals working successfully with local builders and local owners. Local examples of Passive House building are critical to achieving popular acceptance. Consequently, 475 is happy to support the recent publication of […]

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May 15, 2017 12 DSC02158

Slideshow: The PHI Conference in Vienna, Pro Clima, Gutex, And Bewiso

Five members of the 475 crew had the opportunity to travel to Europe over the last several weeks. The main target was to attend the 21st Annual  International Passive House Conference in Vienna. While we were in the neighborhood, we couldn’t resist meeting up with a few of our favorite manufacturing partners: PRO CLIMA, GUTEX, […]

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March 20, 2017

475 Presents: High Performance Gets Real

What exactly do we mean by high-performance building?  What are some of the obstacles to building this way?  And when compromises have to be made, how can we make cost-effective choices and still construct a high-performance, low-energy, and maybe even Passive House building? In this presentation, we talk about the 6 key characteristics of high performance […]

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March 13, 2017 wippro-front-thumb200x200

WIPPRO Klimatec 160: The Only Passive House Certified Attic Stair

Is your attic outside your thermal enclosure?  If so, access to that attic space should be carefully considered.   You want easy and comfortable access but also need to maintain the continuity of the airtightness and insulation layers.   Needless to say traditional attic stairs do not deliver the needed performance.  Until today, the best […]

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February 15, 2017 Roof-THUMB

Daylight Helps the Healing Process: Project Spotlight in Leicester, UK

Daylighting’s known benefits include better student performance and faster patient recovery in medical facilities – so this beautiful roof, in a building that houses the University of Leicester’s medical education, health sciences and psychology departments, serves as an example of striking design that is sensitive to the needs and comforts of occupants.  Now the largest Passive House […]

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January 10, 2017 businessbackslowcarbonusa

475 is proud to join: Business Backs Low-Carbon USA

475 is about climate change activism.  Today, we’re taking another step by joining more than 620 companies including Patagonia, Aspen Skiing Company, and investors across the United States – to encourage the incoming administration and new Congress to stick with the commitments we’ve made in the Paris Climate Agreement.  We pledge to do our part to […]

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December 6, 2016 hphmr_thumb

475 Presents: High Performance Historic Masonry Retrofits

30 Minute Webinar Video We recommend you download the companion eBook and CAD details for this presentation.   Description: The goals of historic preservation and energy efficiency and comfort often seem in conflict, as higher insulation levels can pose new risks to these timeless structures. Yet it need not be so. This comprehensive presentation discusses […]

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November 26, 2016 20150426_inq_re1deal26z-a

4 Hurdles to Hitting Passive House Performance & How to Overcome Them

Passive House performance is the future of building.  As with any trip there are obstacles.   Yet professionals new to Passive House can be disoriented and may not readily see them.   What’s going on? The Passive House Paradox On the one hand Passive House is simply a rediscovery of basic building science with a more rigorous arrangement […]

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November 10, 2016 apollo-13

Avoiding the Abyss: Climate Crisis, Apollo 13 & Passive House in the Age of Donald Trump

  As the New York Times, post-election, reminds us: if Trump abandons the commitments of COP21 made in Paris, other countries like India will likely become disincentivized to act. If this comes to pass it will be impossible to prevent runaway global warming, with human population collapse, massive species extinction and unimaginable levels of suffering. Climate tipping points […]

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November 1, 2016 cornell-tower

Notes From New York: Lessons From A Growing Market

Passive House is growing around the world.  Yet some regions seem to be moving farther, faster.  Why? 475’s own Ken Levenson had a chance to explore this question when asked to talk about what’s happening in the New York region as the keynote speaker at the recent Passive House Massachusetts Symposium in Boston.   What […]

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September 13, 2016 nyserda-logo

NYSERDA Supports Passive House

In support of New York State’s aggressive carbon reduction goals the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority’s new incentives are structured to support a “fabric first” approach and then push toward net zero buildings.  NYSERDA recognizes the power of Passive House in establishing very energy efficient, resilient, healthy and comfortable buildings as the basis of […]

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June 29, 2016 Large-back-wall

Blowerdoor Testing The Best Doggie Door In North America

We’re excited to put the super-efficient Freedom Pet Pass doggie door to the test. In this quick edit of the video, we introduce it by showing how the double-layer of magnetic strips work to hold the insulated flap in place while easily allowing for opening with the push of a big wet nose. These doors come in […]

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May 25, 2016 phppip

The Latest PHPP is Revolutionary

Passive House Software Is Leaping Forward With each iteration of the PHPP (Passive House Planning Package), Passive House practitioners get more powerful tools to reduce building energy by design. Of particular importance to the US audience, the version of PHPP 9 in Imperial Units (PHPP 9 IP) has been released, which is the first energy […]

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March 28, 2016 JLC-LOGO

JLC Reports on Success of Foam-Free Unvented Flat Roof Assembly

475 enables more robust assemblies that are less toxic. Such was the case with the Whitchurch home in northern Vermont – working with the owners and their dedicated Passive House team at Montpelier Construction. The walls were a variation on the I-Joist outrigger configuration with dense pack cellulose between DB+ membrane inboard and SOLITEX Mento Plus […]

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January 26, 2016 439-Bergen-Front-Facade-e1445713379954-199x300

Historic Masonry: Notes and Details (updated)

475 in many ways started with historic masonry retrofits, and with our HQ surrounded by Brownstone Brooklyn, we are helping a great many of these 100+ year old buildings get high-performance/Passive House retrofits for the 21st century.  Our deep interest in making these retrofits work, has led us to produce public interest articles, eBooks, details and extensive […]

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December 15, 2015 BT-Yonkers 12.10.15 - EDIT

Learning from PHIUS

What draws many of us to Passive House is its simplicity, its clarity, its predictability, and it’s drastic impact on comfort and energy efficiency.  But  achieving simplicity requires great repetition, practice and lots of training.  So last week attending the Passive House Institute US (PHIUS)’s Certified Builder training course in Yonkers, NY, was another good […]

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November 29, 2015 passivenyc

Passive NYC: Making the Pathway to 80 by 50

Passive NYC, A snapshot of low energy building opportunities, barriers, & resources, published by the the Building Energy Exchange, demonstrates that Passive House is a force to be reckoned with: in planning the future of our cities, at every level of policy making, and in building design. And 475, with our HQ in Brooklyn, is proud to […]

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August 27, 2015 obama

Obama Endorses Passive House Initiative: This is BIG

In stunning news from Washington DC this week, the White House announced as part of a comprehensive plan to bring renewable energy and energy efficiency to households across the U.S. , that New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) in collaboration with NYSERDA, is launching a Passive House track:  The White House press release makes […]

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May 7, 2015 ReportFromGermany2

475 Goes to Germany

One of the great treats of being a partner at 475 High Performance Building Supply is the annual trip to the International Passive House conference – this year in Leipzig, Germany,  April 17th and 18th. We have the opportunity to see customers from across North America, visit our leading product suppliers and stay up-to-date on […]

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April 2, 2015 JaneSandersInterior

Why New Yorkers Love Passive House

This video speaks for itself. We featured this project in a previous video – 475 On-Site: Historic Brownstone Passive House Retrofit in Brooklyn, NY. It is in process to receive EnerPHit certification with architect, Jane Sanders, and builder, Build With Prospect. So how does this work? Airsealing and insulation. These two measures increase comfort, while drastically reducing energy and outside […]

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April 1, 2015 PHIcertNYtimes

New York Times: Passive House Poised To Go Big

If you make it in New York City, you can make it anywhere. Passive House builders in NYC got recognition for making it happen in last weekend’s New York Times Real Estate section. As New York Passive House trumpeted, it’s been launched above the fold. There’s so much to say about this most recent take on the […]

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January 5, 2015 PoppingTheBalloon

BSC & PHIUS Passive Building Report Not Airtight

Very good enclosure airtightness is a cornerstone characteristic of low-energy, resilient, high-performance (Passive House) buildings. Air control is so important that the Building Science Corporation ranks it second only to keeping the rain out – one notch above vapor control and two notches above thermal insulation – in making a functional enclosure.[1] The Passive House […]

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