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Madrona Passive House

Building Details

Building NameMadrona Passive House Construction / refurbishment date07/07/2015 Building Size315.6 sqm
Building Typeresidential single Address 3514 E. Columbia St Seattle Washington 98122 United States Region americas

Performance Details

Net Zero Operational Carbon

Buildings or developments that display best practice outcomes in energy efficiency, are powered by renewable energy, and as such have been verified and certified as "net zero energy and/or carbon" projects.

Qualification criteria: ILFI Zero Energy Certificate level: Zero Energy Net EUI: 31.3 kWh/m2/yr Net RPI: 34.1 kWh/m2/yr Net Offset Ren Energy Src: Net Offset Details: Net Verification Year: 2017

Additional Details

The design process was a standard one but with an emphasis on design solutions that were optimized for energy modeling. SHED and Hammer & Hand used the energy model data supplied by Dan Whitmore to refine glazing area and location, the wall assembly, as well as the mechanical systems.

The team included the owner, SHED Architecture, and Design, Hammer & Hand, Dan Whitmore of Indicator Consulting (Dan was the H&H for the project). Artisan Electric was the PV installer. The management/team structure was a typical owner, architect-builder relationship and during the design phase, there was intensive collaboration between SHED and Hammer & Hand related to the energy modeling, detailing and constructability. From the owner: “We chose to build to the Passive House standard because it seemed the most thorough and thoughtful standard given our primary goal of reducing the house’s operational energy use (as opposed to lower priority considerations like reducing the energy of construction or the embodied energy in the materials). We wanted a house that was as energy efficient as possible, and that cost at most 30% more than a “traditional” less-efficient house of otherwise comparable quality and functionality. Our hope was (and is) to help push learning, cost-lowering, and adoption of Passive House construction within Seattle, so that eventually it will be no more expensive than a “traditional” design, from a life-cycle point of view.”

The Madrona Passive House is an electric house with a 9.8kW PV net metered to the grid. The PV system was installed by Artisan Electric using SunPower panels. The house also employed one of the first Sanden CO2 Heat pumps to supply both DHW and small radiant heat loop in the concrete slab floor. The home also maintains a constant supply of fresh air with a continuously operating Zehnder HRV. The combination of a high performance and airtight envelope, an optimized low capacity heat pump, an efficient Zehnder HRV and a 9.8kW PV system has created a home that is Net Positive even when EV charging loads are included.

You can find out more about this case study from ILFI here.

Submitter's Details

OrganisationInternational Living Future Institution

We wanted a house that was as energy efficient as possible, and that cost at most 30% more than a “traditional” less-efficient house of otherwise comparable quality and functionality. Our hope was (and is) to help push learning, cost-lowering, and adoption of Passive House construction within Seattle, so that eventually it will be no more expensive than a “traditional” design, from a life-cycle point of view.