This past Friday, Passive House Northwest held their annual conference at Seattle Pacific University.  A few Vancouver Passive House enthusiasts and I took the train down to Seattle to see what’s happening in the world of Passive House and high-performance building just south of the border, where they have very similar climactic conditions and solar access.

It was a great day packed with lecture topics ranging from small local homes, to the Bullitt Center’s Living Building in Seattle, to multi-family Passive House developments in Philadelphia, and all the way to Brussels where they’ve recently included Passive House as a minimum standard for new construction!   It was inspiring to hear from people who are making Passive House happen, and who share our passion for doing it better.  Suppliers of high-performance windows, doors, and envelope components were exhibiting their products, which offered a unique opportunity to see the products side by side, to experience them first hand, to touch the finishes, and try out their oh-so important hardware.

From a technical stand-point, there were great informal discussions amongst attendees and presenters about the best possible assemblies and details, construction sequencing, and cost saving strategies.  I was frequently pulling out drawings of One SEED’s Passive House Prototype to discuss the design and details with building science experts, experienced Passive House builders, developers, energy consultants and other Passive House designers from around the world.  The Passive House community is still small enough that we are all trying to support each other, and the Passive House movement, by taking an open-source approach to the design and construction process.

Despite already having excessively high levels of excitement about Passive House, attending the conference reinforced the fact that this is the right way to build.  Building to code is building the worst possible home you can without breaking the law. At One SEED we are committed to using Passive House in our standard details, stay tuned for more updates about Passive House and One SEED’s Passive House Prototype.

(Photo Above L-R: A. Holden-Pope – One SEED, A. Yankauskas – Brute Force Collaborative, S. Rohler – RPHD, A. Harrmann – CanPHI, M. Paulsen – Red Door Energy Advisors, M. Eliason – Brute Force Collaborative, Photo credit: D. Paris – The Uprising Development)

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