The Design and Value of "Early Adopter" Low-Energy Houses.

Burke, Maria (2017) The Design and Value of "Early Adopter" Low-Energy Houses. Construction Innovation, 17 (3). pp. 262-272. ISSN 1471-4175

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Abstract Purpose. This paper outlines an early adopter “low energy” domestic dwelling, social houses that were built with the collaboration of a University, the local council and the new residents. The origins of this project are from the early days of interest in sustainable housing, the 1970’s. The dwellings were innovative and built to what became known as “the Salford design” which performed to an unusual specification, using about 75% less energy than the UK average for space heating and over 40% less than for houses built to what were then standard building regulations. Design/Methodology/Approach. A qualitative and interpretative stance was deemed to be the most appropriate. Within that lens, interviews were chosen as the primary research instrument. Findings. A marked feature of the results is the variation in energy consumption by different households. A Salford-designed house could be habitable throughout the year without any space heating at all, comfortable at 10%, and very comfortable at 25% of normal consumption. Originality/Value. As there continues to be interest and commitment to reducing energy - not just from the UK but also on a worldwide scale, the United Nations Conference of the Parties known as COP 22 (2016) met in Morocco to take forward many of the initiatives outlined in the Paris Agreement 2015. It is of interest, then, that the latest set of interviews showed that the houses built to the innovative and original 1970’s Salford design principles, protected by a highly insulated, well-sealed envelopes are still today functioning at a relatively low energy threshold.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This project was fully funded by the award of the Vice Chancellors Iconic Project Fund (when I also worked at the University of Salford) and I would like to acknowledge all the Salford team (Phil Brown, and myself who acted as Joint Principal Investigators; the sterling work undertaken by Gareth Morris, Peter Webster and Will Swann). One of the major outputs of the funding was the opportunity to write up the full technical report, which includes diagrams, photos, and many more design details. This was published internally by the University of Salford.
Subjects: K Architecture, building & planning > K220 Construction management
K Architecture, building & planning > K450 Housing
P Mass communications & documentation > P110 Information management
Departments: Faculty of Business, Law and Sport > Management
Depositing User: Maria Burke
Date Deposited: 17 Jan 2017 09:31
Last Modified: 31 May 2018 00:00

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