Passive duplex house, Brasov county
Location: Poiana Marului, Brasov
Built area: 480 mp
When elaborating this project, some principles of a passive house came into play by default. The altitude constraints (920m), the location on top of a hill, the strong winds, the low temperatures during the winter, all correlated with the temporary inhabitation, the lack of deep underground streams, the difficult access for construction materials, the geography of the land, all led to an architectural solution and a volume which met all these particularities. The result was a semi-buried house, opening towards the South, which keeps an almost constant temperature at the semi basement.
Because the area lacks deep underground streams, it was necessary to use rain water, which is collected from the roof of the house, and, using gravity, carried into buried tanks of high volume. From these tanks, the water is filtered and used for housekeeping. Another architectural challenge was solving the inevitable issue of the frozen and damaged water installations during the winter, when the houses are not used permanently. Because it is a semi-buried house, because alternate strata of thermic insulation and air spaces were used for the wooden walls, because the roof is insulated with a cellulose mattress 26-28 cm thick, because of the many glass covered surfaces on the southern side, the interior temperature during the winter, without any energy consumption, does not reach the freezing point. The main source of heating is a system made up of a thermo fireplace situated in the living room, which heats all the areas of the house. It was enclosed inside a stove which keeps a warm temperature for a long period of time after the fire was turned off. The house is made up of two apartments situated on two levels, with bedrooms located in the semi-buired area and the living rooms in the upper part.