Citizens For Community Resilience and Sustainability Presentation

February 16th, 2013 by Tim Eian

 

Sustainability Community In Action

I was invited to speak at this month’s Citizens For Community Resilience and Sustainability meeting in St. Anthony Village on Saturday, February 16th, at 3PM in the St. Anthony Village Community Center Council Chambers. My talk will center around high-performance new homes and retrofits—highlighting the potential and approach. The event is free and open to the public.

 

Article in Remodeling Magazine

January 9th, 2013 by Tim Eian

Remodeling Logo

Recently we were interviewed by Remodeling Magazine about our EnerPHit project in South Minneapolis. This project is a pilot EnerPHit project our office designed. Certification is in progress with the Passivhaus Institute in Darmstadt, Germany.

You can read the entire article here.

 

Here is a thought for home owners and lenders

November 21st, 2012 by Tim Eian

Client Comment:

I discussed financing with my credit union. It seems the practical constraint is the value that the neighborhood can support.

My reply:
This is all too often the case and can be very limiting. It really depends on the lender, though. Some are able to use the significant reduction in operating cost as an asset to lend against. It may take the right lender and a bit of creative thinking to pull a project like this together. In many cases, however, I have seen the challenge be the ability to pull together financing for any project in the first place, and not specifically for the added cost to make it a green, high-performance project.
In most neighborhoods it does cost more to build new than to buy used, much in the same way that a new car is more expensive than a used one. In some neighborhoods the difference can be significant. If the decision to lend is purely based on neighborhood value, many neighborhoods cannot be built in other than by those owners who can afford to pay cash. These people, however, are likely to build elsewhere. So in short, if we can agree that a decent neighborhood deserves new people to come in and make an investment, we have to get beyond the point of the simple neighborhood cost comparison and agree that in some cases, a new home will cost more than an old, used home—but at the same time represent a greater value and asset to the owner, society, and the lender.
In addition, we need to take a closer look at total cost of ownership over a given lifecycle or time-period, which may show that a more expensive home may be the cheaper home in the long run, and therefore present a more desirable proposition for future owners, which in turn are likely to pay more for it. That is of course, if the added cost went towards things that actually reduce the total cost of ownership. The two main investment categories that will produce this kind of cost advantage are the cost of operation (mainly energy and other services), as well as the cost of maintenance (materials and systems) including replacement cost. I would call this resource and risk management, and ultimately sustainability. I think that sustainability is worth something, and propose to lenders to recognize that.
 

Upcoming Passive House Events

November 8th, 2012 by Tim Eian

Please Join Us For Two Upcoming Events

TE Studio is a co-founder and proud supporter of the local Passive House Alliance chapter. This month we are involved in a couple of upcoming events. Please join us for an opportunity to learn about and experience Passive House—the World’s most comfortable and energy effcient building standard.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2012 International Passive House Days

The Passive House in the Woods in Hudson, WI will be open to the public this Sunday, November 11th, from 10.45 AM to Noon for a tour with homeowner Gary Konkol and Passive House Designer Tim Eian. Tim will be offering insights into the performance of the home in its first two years of operation. 908 Kirkwood Way North, Hudson, WI 54016.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Passive House Alliance MSP
Fall Lecture Series #3

Gary Nelson, co-Founder of The Energy Conservatory:
Air Tightness And Its Importance in High-Performance Buildings
The Energy Conservatory is known worldwide as a leader in the building performance testing industry with some of the most reliable, accurate and versatile performance testing products on the market today.
The event will be held from 5-7PM at our office in the historic St. Anthony Main building at 212 2nd St. SE #222, Minneapolis, MN 55414.
Please RSVP at the National PH Alliance Calendar, Click Register.
More information found at www.phamsp.org

 

 

TE Studio’s Projects At Das Haus in Chicago

September 26th, 2012 by Tim Eian

Das Haus Logo

We were fortunate to be asked to display some of our work at the Das Haus Exhibit in Chicago, which is ongoing at the moment. Our colleague Mark Miller was kind enough to record the project posters in place on Daley Plaza with his phone. If you are in the area, make sure to check it out in person.

We’ll showcase some of them at this year’s annual North American Passive House Conference in Denver this week, as well.

TE Studio - Farm Poster MinnePHit poster Passive House In The Woods Poster

 

 

Upcoming Lecture Announcements

September 1st, 2012 by Tim Eian

Passive House Retrofits – The MinnePHit House

9/12/2012: 5 – 7.30 PM

TE Studio Office: 212 2nd St. SE #2222, Minneapolis, MN 55414

RSVP: Please use this link.

 

2012 National Passive House Conference banner

Lessons Learned From The Passive House In The Woods Project

2012 North American Passive House Conference

9/29/2012: 8 – 10 AM

Marriot City Center, Denver, CO

 

Case Study Published On Passive House Alliance Website

August 2nd, 2012 by Tim Eian

 

phaus.org screenshot

The Passive House Alliance U.S. published a case study on the Passive House in the Woods project last week. You can find it at this link: http://www.phaus.org/learn/case-studies

 

 

Eagle Bluff Retrofit Earns MN-first 1000 Home Challenge Certification

June 22nd, 2012 by Tim Eian

Eagle Bluff Director's Residence (Northeast perspective)

In 2011, Eagle Bluff Environmental Learning Center completed a Deep Energy Reduction Retrofit of its director’s residence—its oldest most energy inefficient building—with the help of TE Studio.  The residence was originally built in 1973.  It used to be heated with 17 cords of split, dried oak firewood.  It was extremely leaky—during a home audit in 2007, it would not achieve 50 Pascals of pressure during the initial blower door test. It eventually achieved a 0.45 ACH50 reading.

We provided initial consulting and retrofit designs for this project, which was later executed with the help of many volunteers. The home was just recognized by ACI as the 9th in the country to meet the 1000 Home Challenge, and as the first project in Minnesota to do so.

Find the official letter of recognition from ACI below the break.

Read the rest of this entry »

 

Minnesota Passive House Farm Project

June 20th, 2012 by Tim Eian

We finally got around to rendering a current project in rural Minnesota. This farmhouse replaces a family home and becomes the new hub on the property. It is designed to meet the Passive House standard and become net-zero or energy plus with the addition of a future PV system on the south-facing roof slope, as shown on the southwest corner rendering below.

Minnesota Passive House Farm (Southwest corner)

In addition to the living spaces, this project includes a front porch, garage/workshop, and back porch.

Minnesota Passive House Farm (West facade)

Ground breaking is scheduled for late summer.

 

Urban Retrofit Project Earns Minnesota GreenStar Gold Certification

May 16th, 2012 by Tim Eian

Benjamin St NE Front

Minnesota GreenStar Gold Certificate Benjamin St.

One of our early works was just awarded the Minnesota GreenStar Gold certification—representing their highest category for remodeled homes. The project consisted of building envelope upgrades and mechanical systems enhancements, as well as remodeling and adding with earth friendly practices and materials.