A Designer’s Story

passivehouseplans.ie and PHAI 

As an active member of the Passive House Association of Ireland we were recently requested to outline our activities illustrating how we are promoting the Passive House movement in Ireland.

In October 2011 we launched www.passivehouseplans.ie The purpose of our website was to illustrate designs which are modern, cost effective and to the highest Passive House energy standards.  We wished to illustrate to fellow designers and potential clients that constructing to Passive House standards can be both attractive and cost effective, with real economic returns to the occupiers of the house within a short period notwithstanding the comfort and health benefits throughout the lifetime of the home.

passivehouseplans.ie undertook our first trade show in November 2011 at the Self Build Show in Cork and we are glad to say that we were received extremely well, with the general public showing a real interest in the Passive House concept as well as a surprising level of knowledge from a large number of people.

At the end of November 2011, we met with Ciaran Cannon TD and Minister of State for the Department of Education.  We outlined to Minister Cannon the importantance of developing the Passive House concept in Ireland and what the benefits to job creation could be created if Irelandbecame a leader in Passive House design and construction.  We put it to Senator Cannon the benefits in assuring that the new and retrofit Schools programme his department is undertaking should meet the Passive House standard. To achieve this it should be complusary that a Passive House Designer/Consultant is appointed to the design team and conditional that all future project should meet the Passive House standard.  We illustrated to him a extension that was need completion outside Loughrea, Co. Galway which was under construction at the time to low energy and Passive House Details.

In December 2011 passivehouseplans.ie applied for planning permission for 2 No. Passive Houses in Ballinasloe, Co.Galway.  This was to add to two previous dwellinghouses on the adjacent site which were granted permission in October 2011.  This will most likely be the first Passive House development in the West of Ireland.

Since the start of January 2012 passivehouseplans.ie are extremely busy designing a very exciting project due to begin construction late spring early summer in Lusk, Co. Dublin.  This project overlooking Dublin Bay is a one storey house 3,800ft2 over a basement which nestles into the hillside.  We are extremely excited about this project as the client is very anxious that the project would comfortably meet the Passive House standard.

Other Passive House projects includes a one and half story 2650ft2 dwellinghouse in Furbo, Co.Galway which is scheduled for submission for planning permission before the end of January. January 2012 will also see the completion of a two room extension to a National school just outside Loughrea, Co.Galway illustrating high energy standards and Passive House detailing.

We are certainly looking forward to promoting the Passive House movement in Ireland in 2012 through educating clients, providing exciting energy efficient and cost effective design.  Our aim in 2012 is to prove to our clients by delivery of their projects that the Passive House standard makes sense both economically and from a health benefit and comfort point of view.  We encourage our fellow Passive House members to do the same, lead by example, the time is right that the Passive House becomes the norm and not the exception!

Signed: Cathal Spellman Passive House Designer

Pigott’s Street, Loughrea, Co.Galway.



(091) 841271