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HLM unveil Highland Passive House

August 26 2015

HLM unveil Highland Passive House
HLM have unveiled a low energy passive house in the Highland village of Gorstan, Ross-shire, which blends traditional features with the latest energy consumption and emission standards.

Tigh-na-Groit consumes 80 per cent less energy than standard builds, achieved by careful consideration of form and orientation to minimise heat loss and maximise solar gain.

Ross Barrett, associate director at HLM, said: “We think that this house best represents our ethos and mission to shape the built environment towards a more sustainable future as it tackles the problems of fuel poverty and carbon emissions in the most effective way: by minimising energy consumption.”

Other features include insulation with no thermal bridging, airtight fabric and mechanical ventilation with 90 per cent efficient heat recovery.
Thermal modelling minimises the risk of over-heating
Thermal modelling minimises the risk of over-heating
Tigh-na-Groit's traditional appearance belies a raft of energy saving features
Tigh-na-Groit's traditional appearance belies a raft of energy saving features


#1 Posted by ooctopus on 26 Aug 2015 at 10:46 AM
When was this built?
#2 Posted by Timelord on 26 Aug 2015 at 12:00 PM
Urban Realm
#3 Posted by Urban Realm on 26 Aug 2015 at 12:11 PM
Apologies, there was a mix-up with the photography. Correct visuals are now attached.
#4 Posted by Gillmac on 27 Aug 2015 at 09:22 AM
Very nice. Simple, stylish, modest.....good work!
#5 Posted by academicviewer on 27 Aug 2015 at 12:20 PM
Nice considered architcecture but mechanical ventilation at domestic scale?
John Grant
#6 Posted by John Grant on 27 Aug 2015 at 12:40 PM
Does the house comply with Passivhaus design standards or is the use of the description 'passive house' just a claim to low energy consumption
#7 Posted by clive on 27 Aug 2015 at 12:55 PM
#5academicviewer. Passive House design is generally based around an OCD level of attention to air tightness. Over and above aspect, solar gain etc, you end up with a hermetically sealed box. This requires mechanical ventilation, which is usually a highly efficient heat recovery unit too, to provide the required ventilation, without throwing open a window when it's minus 10 outside. On a domestic scale, they are small, quiet, and energy efficient.
#8 Posted by Clive on 27 Aug 2015 at 12:56 PM
That said, i sleep with the window open 12 months of the year. Can't stand a warm bedroom.
Big Chanterelle
#9 Posted by Big Chanterelle on 27 Aug 2015 at 13:26 PM
Air tight buildings are a pointless exercise in a domestic situation in Scotland. They are not conducive to pleasant living environments and are really part of this generations "ego" driven fetishistic culture that tack on "sustainability" onto any building. Not needed.
Auntie Nairn
#10 Posted by Auntie Nairn on 27 Aug 2015 at 14:12 PM
#9 in your opinion
#11 Posted by james on 27 Aug 2015 at 15:55 PM
Never mind those vanguardist eco-warriors at HLM out there trailblazing the path for the rest of us (and for whom we are all truly grateful), but Timelord's suggestion of 1952 set me thinking of Morris and Steedman Associates' much more recent Clachaig House/Home? Or, am i looking at the same building group in a previous life? I'm confused. It's a slow day...
#12 Posted by Stephen on 27 Aug 2015 at 18:11 PM
@ 9
Should we assume from that that you don't believe in scientific principles?
An air tight building just allows for controlled ventilation. Of course it's a more sustainable method of building and of course you can create whatever internal climate you like whilst still adhering to that principle - it's actually easier to do so.
#13 Posted by passivist on 27 Aug 2015 at 22:25 PM
#6 seems it was passive house certified earlier this year
#14 Posted by Gillmac on 28 Aug 2015 at 10:24 AM
30% of carbon emissions worldwide are caused by buildings...can't keep blowing hot air out of the windows & leaky building fabric forever.
Neil C
#15 Posted by Neil C on 28 Aug 2015 at 10:41 AM
Talking about hot air, 34% of methane emissions, contibuting more significantly than carbon emissions to global warming come out of cows backsides. What can architects do here?
bear post please
#16 Posted by bear post please on 28 Aug 2015 at 12:00 PM
eat more of them
Big in Chantelle
#17 Posted by Big in Chantelle on 21 Sep 2015 at 11:04 AM
Interesting article:
Es Tresidder
#18 Posted by Es Tresidder on 19 Dec 2017 at 15:45 PM
It may seem counter-intuitive but certified Passive Houses typically have much better indoor air quality than naturally-ventilated houses. People are much more sensitive to cold draughts than poor air quality so tend to shut off trickle vents and close windows in cold weather. A well designed MVHR system in an airtight building provides plentiful fresh air without causing thermal discomfort.

Like to sleep with the window open? You can do that in a Passive House too. It will have a similar impact on your heating bills as it does in a normal house, but it's perfectly acceptable. The difference is that in a Passive House you don't *need* to sleep with the window open to have good indoor air quality.

Disclosure of interest: I'm a certified Passive House designer.

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