Copenhagen,
19
November
2010
|
00:00
Europe/Copenhagen

Germany's first CO2-neutral renovated settler house opened

Summary

LichtAktiv Haus is the fourth Model Home 2020 experiment out of six buildings in Europe to be constructed by the VELUX Group

After a five-month construction phase, the transformation is complete and this 50-year-old traditional semi-detached house in the Wilhelmsburg district of Hamburg has been fully modernised and expanded to include a light and generously-proportioned extension. The innovative modernisation strategy combines maximum liveability with optimum energy efficiency.

The conceptual design picks up on the original "settler spirit" of the area, which was built in the 1950s: the original idea was to build a number of socalled settler houses (Siedlerhäuser), each with a large garden, to make it possible for the homeowners to achieve self-sufficiency in terms of fruit and vegetables. The new goal is for the occupants to be self-sufficient in terms of energy.

Europeans spend 90% of their time indoors, so it is imperative that buildings provide the best possible indoor climate to live and work in. In addition, buildings account for 40% of Europe's total energy consumption. The aim of sustainable buildings of the future, therefore, is to reduce this energy consumption considerably and meet remaining energy requirements with renewable energy sources. In order to solve these issues successfully, factors such as region, culture and infrastructure need to be taken into account.

The Model Home 2020 project is an experiment by the VELUX Group to demonstrate that it is possible – even with today's products – to link these three aspects, while also focusing on the needs of people. Model Home 2020 is a part of the VELUX Group strategy to take an active part in developing sustainable buildings for the future. It is the VELUX vision of how future buildings can be climate-neutral, comfortable and attractive places to live in through daylight and fresh air.

This approach is also consistent with the VELUX Group's support of the Active House concept - a vision of buildings that contribute to a healthy and comfortable life for their occupants without having a negative impact on the climate and environment. An active house is designed to work in harmony with nature, to use the energy of the sun and wind intelligently and to encourage a sustainable lifestyle.

LichtAktiv Haus is the fourth Model Home 2020 experiment out of six buildings in Europe to be constructed by the VELUX Group

The LichtAktiv Haus in 2011: visitor attraction and residential experiment
The LichtAktiv Haus will be open to the public and available for events from early 2011. Thereafter, the house will be tested by a family for one year as part of the experiment. During the occupancy, sophisticated systems will be used to continuously monitor and record energy consumption and indoor climate conditions – all without placing any constraints on the family living there.

"Underpinning it all is our conviction that human beings, as users of a building, should be the main focus when it comes to developing sustainable living as a viable proposition for the future," says VELUX Germany General Manager Sebastian Dresse. "The LichtAktiv Haus is intended as a home that will adapt to meet the needs of its occupants, and not the other way round."

The subsequent evaluation of the data will offer an insight into whether the VELUX Group's vision of creating ideal living conditions with comfortable indoor climate, lots of natural light and optimum energy efficiency can be achieved in practice. The roof window manufacturer also intends to make its results public. "It is part of our company philosophy to take on social responsibility. With the Model Home 2020 project, we want to make a positive contribution towards energy-efficient, high-quality building and living standards for the future," explains Dresse.

In addition to the high-end renovation option represented by the LichtAktiv Haus, the project team has also devised other, less extensive modernisation variants as part of the integral planning process. These show how future-oriented modernisation is also possible on small and medium budgets. Just as in the high-end variant, the VELUX Group has designed the three alternative options with the emphasis placed firmly on balancing energy requirements with liveability and will present its findings in 2011.

Photo CaptionFrom the opening of LichtAktiv Haus (from left to right): Rolf-Rüdiger Seidel (chairman of Verband für Haus- und Wohneigentum Hamburg), Jan Ostermann (Ostermann Architekten), Jørgen Tang-Jensen (CEO VELUX A/S), Uli Hellweg (director of IBA Hamburg GmbH), Katharina Fey (concept), Karoline Herger (Ostermann Architekten), Markus Schreiber (chairman of local area Hamburg-Mitte), Petra Schumacher (manager of marketing VELUX Deutschland), Sebastian Dresse (general manager of VELUX Deutschland GmbH)Foto: VELUX Deutschland GmbH

Experiment 4 LichtAktiv Haus
LichtAktiv Haus is the first CO2-neutral modernisation of a so-called Siedlerhaus, a semi-detached house from the 1950s located in the Wilhelmsburg district of Hamburg. The innovative modernisation strategy combines maximum livability with optimum energy efficiency. The once tight and closed structure of the building has been transformed into spacious rooms with high levels of daylight, providing occupants with the best living comfort. Natural ventilation ensures a healthy indoor climate

LichtAktiv Haus aims to achieve carbon neutrality and renewable energies meet all its energy demands. Thus, the conceptual design picks up on the original "settler spirit" of the occupants being self-sufficient in food. The goal now is self-sufficiency in energy.

The project is in full accordance with the next generation of design principles frequently referred to as "active house". The objective is to achieve a balance between energy efficiency and optimal indoor climate with a building that dynamically adjusts to its surroundings and yet is climate-neutral.

The house was designed by:Blueprint planning: TU Darmstadt FGee, Prof. Manfred HeggerConcept: Katharina Fey (TU-Darmstadt)Architects: Ostermann ArchitektenEnergy concept: HL-Technik, Prof. Klaus DanielsLight concept: Prof. Peter Andres PLDAStatic: TSB-Ingenieure, Prof. Karsten TichelmannPartners: the VELUX Group - VELFAC, WindowMaster, Sonnenkraft Cooperation-partners: Eternit, Gira, Grohe, Keramag, Knauf, Knauf Insulation, Nolte Küchen, Somfy

LichtAktiv Haus is the fourth out of six buildings in Europe to be constructed by the VELUX Group as part of the Model Home 2020 project.

About Model Home 2020
Model Home 2020 is an experiment launched by the VELUX Group as part of our strategy to take an active part in developing sustainable buildings for the future. It is our vision of how future buildings can be both climate-neutral and comfortable and attractive places to live in through daylight and fresh air. The project is in full accordance with the next generation of design principles frequently referred to as 'active house' (target="_blank">www.activehouse.info) The objective is to achieve a balance between energy efficiency and optimal indoor climate with a building that dynamically adjusts to its surroundings and yet is climate-neutral. Model Home 2020 comprises six demonstration projects.

The two experiments in Denmark were built in a partnership between the VELUX Group and VELFAC. Each of the Model Home projects was implemented in close cooperation with local and regional partners, suppliers, architects, engineers and researchers.

In the VELUX Group, we believe that one experiment is better than a thousand expert views. Each building must reflect and respond to the different climatic, cultural and architectural conditions of the countries in which they are built. The houses will be open to the public for 6-12 months after completion and then sold. Each house will be monitored during occupancy to learn how the experiments turn out in real-life conditions. The houses in Denmark were built in 2009, those in Germany and Austria will open in 2010, and those in the UK and France will follow in 2011.

Contact
Jens Bekke
Director Global Media Relations, The VELUX Group
+45 21 55 07 89
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