Rammed Earth Passive House and Zero Energy Projects #Passivehouse #Netzero #RammedEarth

A (small) selection of  Rammed Earth Passive House and Zero Energy Projects

by Alexander Maurer

 

Following our blog on the Sirewall Rammed Earth building system, we would like to showcase some actual high performance building projects which have used or are using Rammed Earth.

The number is growing fast – here are a few:

Project 1: VanDusen Botanical Gardens, Vancouver

Credit Sirewall

Unveiled in October of last year, the VanDusen Botanical Garden’s Visitors Centre is the first Living Building in Canada and therefore achieving one of the most stringent high performance building standards out there (Living Building Challenge).

The shape of the building was designed to replicate the leaves of an orchid with a stem located in the main atrium where visitors can take note of as they enter the lobby. Sirewall’s Rammed Earth system was incorporated throughout the building’s interior and exterior.

Credit Sirewall

Credit Sirewall

You can find more info on the VanDusen Gardens Rammed Earth building here.

Project 2: Rammed Earth Passive House Castleton, Ontario

Credit Terrell Wong

Designed by architect Terrell Wong, this project is the first of it’s kind in several aspects: 1st Rammed Earth home in Ontario and also 1st Rammed Earth Passive House in Canada. While the exterior wall is Rammed Earth with a Polyiso core (R50), the roof is made of structural insulated panels (SIP’s) with an R-Value of 40 giving this home the high performance envelope it needs to achieve Passive House standard.

Credit Terrell Wong

Credit Terrell Wong

Credit Terrell Wong

Project 3: Net Zero Ready Home “Midori Uchi”, North Vancouver

Credit Naikoon Construction

Aiming for one of the greenest homes in Canada is Naikoon Construction, the developer and builder of this Net Zero Ready home named “Midori Uchi” – a Japanese inspired project aiming for LEED Home Platinum . The Sirewall Rammed Earth system is showcased here as a feature wall, blending in nicely with the conventional wood frame construction, something interesting from an architectural design and aesthetics point of view. An extensive list of technologies are being showcased here including Rainwater Recycling, Solar Hot Water, use of Reclaimed Lumber, Recycled Building Materials, Home Energy Monitoring System and more. Check it out.

Credit Naikoon Construction

Project 4: Rammed Earth (Lehm) Passivhaus Office Building Trattendorf, Austria

Credit Natur & Lehm

Unique in it’s use of materials and in the approach, this office building was constructed using stabilized rammed earth with a wood frame structure. Prefabricated as panels offsite, the Rammed earth panels were shipped onsite with the building erected within days. This is quite a different system developed by Austrian company Natur & Lehm compared to the Sire wall and  other Rammed earth system in North America: The wood frame structure is filled with straw (acts as insulation) and a soil blend (“Eco fiber soil blend” ) is applied or wrapped if you will to the outside/inside acting as a seal. On the exterior different siding options can be used, or you can leave it as is. More info on this project and the technologies used here.

Credit Natur & Lehm

Credit natur & Lehm

Credit Natur & Lehm

….and some more images (with links) of Rammed Earth Buildings around the world….click on the image to visit the project’s website:

Credit Sirewall – Nk-Mip Cultural Cetnre

Brittany Ground house

Sirewall – Passive Solar Home

Lehm Biohaus – lehm.at

Sirewall – Art Studio

Inspired? – We would like to hear from you. Contact us at maurer@markenprojects.com if you have any questions or for further information on Rammed Earth, Passive House or Zero Energy Building Design & Consulting.