Ty Cantref – PassivHaus Homes

Posted on Tuesday, November 1st, 2011 at 4:15 pm

Local Housing Association, Ty Cantref, asked me to design a pair of three bedroom, five person demi-detached houses to complete a row of three pairs of semi-detached ex-council houses on the edge of a small community in a very rural setting. The plots were very small and required a very compact solution to leave a reasonable garden area. Designed originally to full PassivHaus standards, achieving the necessary 15 Kwh/m2 maximum energy consumption allowed, with windows to the south that had to be carefully designed to prevent summer overheating, when even in the winter the living rooms could be heated just by a large plasma screen tv! I obtained planning approval in the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park and passed building regulations. However, just as the contracts were about to be let and construction commenced, the Welsh Assembly Government withdrew the promised extra funding that the client required to carry out the work and some of the features, including the roof mounted solar hot water heating and photovoltaic array and commitment to erect a local community wind turbine, were omitted. Therefore the dwellings, once completed, could not be Passiv Haus certified as had been originally planned, but were still built to very low Co2 emission standards. The chimney stacks were added to partly to match the original pairs of houses but also built as inlet and outlet for the mechanical heat recovery ventilation systems installed to be installed in each roof space. While the central stack served the small water heating boilers.