Little did we know when campaigning for the Fingal energy standard in 2005-06 that Construct Ireland would have a direct impact on Ikea’s first Irish store. Driven by a combination of Fingal’s requirements and their own renewable energy policy, the Swedish retail giant has invested in the largest ground source heat pump installation in Ireland and the UK, along with a well-thought biomass system fed by an onsite waste stream and a host of other green measures, as John Hearne reports
Few concepts in sustainable design have caught on like the passive house. Since the construction of the first passive house in Germany in 1990, an estimated 15 to 20,000 houses have been built to what is arguably the world’s leading low energy building standard. Drawing from his experience in sustainable building since the early 1980s, Bill Quigley of NuTech Renewables posits an alternative approach.
Whether we reside permanently in an existing residence or are looking to build a new home, it is vital that we consider the well being of the occupants as well as the environment. RTE presenter Duncan Stewart stresses the importance of a healthy home.
The Daintree Building is a mixed-use, sustainable urban building on Pleasant’s Place, just off Camden St. Dublin , writes Brian O’Brien of Solearth Architects. Conceived in 1999 it has been a long development process—but by late September Daintree should be open for business and the ever innovative Daintree (Paper Co) Ltd will have a new home, one appropriate to the delightfulness of their products and their focus on nature’s generosity for their raw materials.
Chris Croly from BDP outlines the low energy and renewable energy strategies used in University College Cork’s new Environmental Research Institute, a test bed for the design and performance of sustainable buildings, which is ideally suited to housing the 200+ environmental projects carried out by its researchers.
At Tom Heneghan’s new development in Dromard, Belmullet, Co. Mayo, it’s a case of sixteen units down, eleven to go as Construct Ireland goes to press. Exceeding the thermal performance requirements of the Building Regulations by some 60%, these houses incorporate a range of innovative and affordable sustainable building technologies which together deliver high comfort, low energy living, as John Hearne reveals.
The desire for better insulated, more environmentally friendly homes is driving ever more Irish self-builders to investigate alternatives to traditional block building. Jason Walsh visited a contemporary style factory-built timber frame house built in County Waterford in 2005.
In September, Sustainable Energy Ireland launched a major energy efficient housing development in Tuam, Co Galway. Houses in the development are over 70% more energy efficient than houses built to standard Building Regulations requirements. Construct Ireland’s John Hearne describes.