Property would be first residential high rise in the world that is also a passive house
A new European building method that is touted to cut energy costs by as much as 90% is going to get one of its first big U.S. tests at a new technology campus that Cornell University is developing on an island in New York City’s East River.
The first residential building on the Cornell Tech campus that is beginning to take shape on Roosevelt Island is using cutting-edge design, materials and insulation to make the tower virtually airtight. In cold weather and with little power, this so-called passive building method can keep a house’s interior temperature of approximately 55 degrees Fahrenheit for days, proponents say.
Passive design first began showing up in Germany in the 1990s, and since then a number of for-profit and nonprofit organizations have been formed throughout the world to promote the building style, certify passive homes and train architects on the method, which includes special ventilation systems that provide fresh air.
Benjamin Wünsch, a spokesman at the Passive House Institute based in Germany, said the for-profit organization has certified more than 10,000 housing units around the world. […]