Ford Close

Consult Passivhaus

Ford Close

20 social houses in rural Cornwall completed in 2011.  Passivhaus was chosen because there was no gas on site, and the housing association had very poor experience with heat pumps.

The Team

  • Client - Aster Group
  • Architect - Mitchell Architects
  • Certification - Co-create

Our Focus

This was our first significant Passivhaus scheme, we provided consultancy from concept through to completion on the building fabric.

We undertook the mechanical services design, which relied heavily on electricity for heating and hot water (plus solar thermal). Using electricity to heat meant achieving Passivhaus was critical, and we focused particularly on reducing losses from the hot water system.

We were particularly keen to see how the buildings actually performed so undertook a co-heating test on two of the dwellings. This was one of the first such tests on a Passivhaus development.

In addition, for the whole site we took hourly data on room temperatures, humidity in addition to energy use for heating, hot water and small power. We also carried out regular interviews with the occupants. The results have been very interesting and fed through to our work in numerous ways from lobbying PHI regarding internal heat gains to improvements in our ventilation commissioning.