Boston Design Guide Blog

Boston Design Guide covered the news about the recent BRICC award for ZED’s Wellfleet Modern Home. ZeroEnergy Design and A.F. Hultin & Co. won a BRICC Award for "Excellence in New Single-Family Home Design and Construction". The recognition was for a three-bedroom, two and a half bath new green, energy efficient home in Wellfleet, MA created for a West Coast couple with Cape Cod family.


Chatham Magazine features energy efficient home by ZeroEnergy Design

ZeroEnergy Design’s award winning ’Chatham Mashview House’ is featured in the fall/winter edition of Chatham Magazine. The article includes an interview with both Stephanie Horowitz of ZED and the homeowners, Jeff Berg and Debra Paget.

Berg and Paget knew they wanted an energy efficient home and they knew of ZED from their time at Cornell University. The energy efficient features include a continuous air barrier, super-insulated building enclosure, air source heat pump, energy recovery ventilator, and triple glazed, tilt-turn windows. Constructed by Eastward Homes, the home is a single-story design that will allow the homeowners to age in place. The Cape Cod home was also honored with the Prism Award for Best Energy Efficient Project last year.

You can read more about the house and how the couple realized which features were perfect for aging in place by picking up a copy of the magazine, which is available at local bookstores and other retailers, or reading the article online.


BRICC Award for New Cape Cod Green Home

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ZeroEnergy Design and A.F. Hultin & Co. Won a BRICC Award for Excellence in New Single-Family Home Design and Construction. The award winning Boston architect and Cape Cod contractor were recognized for a green, energy efficient, Cape Cod home.

The recognition was for a three-bedroom, two and a half bath new green home in Wellfleet, MA created for a West Coast couple that wanted a vacation home for themselves, their family and as rental property.

Our clients are academic professionals and their focus is sustainability,” said Stephanie Horowitz of ZeroEnergy Design. “When they couldn’t find a green home for sale on Cape Cod, they purchased a piece of property near their family and commissioned our firm to design one.”

Several green attributes function in unison to create the energy efficient 1,800 square-foot home. Continuous super-insulation and exceptional air sealing reduce the annual heating requirements. Triple-pane windows to capture views and passive solar gain. An air source heat pump keeps the home cool in the summer and warm in the winter. High efficiency appliances and LED lighting keep energy consumption low. On the rooftop, a solar electric system produces enough energy to offset most of the annual energy consumption. Overall, the home uses 89% less energy than similar new homes.

The home layout is also efficient with an L-shaped open living, dining and kitchen space to allow ample space for entertaining. The master suite with a built-in study is located at the western end on the entry level, while on the lower level are two guest bedrooms, a full bathroom and the laundry area.

The home is built on a sloping site optimized for outdoor entertaining through the use of a dining patio on grade and a platform deck without the need for railings. Beautiful views of the surrounding forest are captured while still attracting natural light throughout the home.

The entire team worked hard to create this green home that meets all the client’s wishes and our collective commitment to ecologically sensible design,” Horowitz said. “We also have to credit the contractor, A.F. Hultin, who executed the design exceptionally well.


About the architect, ZeroEnergy Design:

ZeroEnergy Design provides full service modern green architecture and mechanical design. The firm designs green homes and buildings pursuing exceptional energy performance. The unique collaboration in-house between architecture, mechanical design, and financial analysis drives a competitive advantage and enables the firm to deliver fully integrated design services.

About the contractor, A.F. Hultin & Co:

A.F. Hultin builds architecturally-designed, custom homes in the towns of Provincetown, Truro, Wellfleet and Eastham. With over 35 years of experience, they understand the unique requirements of building on the Outer Cape, including all aspects of home building and remodeling. Their long-standing relationships with experienced local tradesmen and staff of licensed carpenters allows them to manage all aspects of each project.

ZeroEnergy Design continues to lead AIA 2030 climate initiative

ZeroEnergy Design is one of only ten architectural firm nationwide that achieved a predicted energy use intensity (pEUI) savings of 70% across their entire design portfolio, according to the recently released summary of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) 2030 Commitment. Of the 480 firms participating in the initiative, 212 reported and only ten of those achieved the 70% goal. ZeroEnergy Design exceed the goal with an 88.7% total design portfolio reduction.

The goal of the 2030 Challenge, which began in 2010, is for all new buildings and major renovations to be carbon neutral by 2030.  One of the main targets for architecture firms is an energy consumption performance standard of 70% below average for all major renovations, developments and buildings. The other goals are reducing the fossil fuel standard by 80% in 2020, 90% in 225 and eliminating fossil fuel GHG emitting energy for all new buildings and major renovations by 2030.

Architectural firms continued efforts to reach their environmental goals. According to the report, 17.8 million metric tons of carbon savings were reported in 2017, a 6.7% increase from 2016. The carbon savings are equivalent to the entire state of Maine. In dollars and cents, this is a savings of $3.2 billion in annual operating costs.

Other notable statistics from the 2017 report:

  • The report examined 16,856 total projects, an increase of 21% from 2016. The projects came from 90 different countries.

  • Progress continues. Zero Energy and nine other firms exceeded the 70% of the pEUI savings goal and the majority of the firms are between 40% and 60%.

  • The statistics show the 2030 Commitment goals can be reached in any region or climate.

Designing and building homes that use 50% less energy than the building code requires is an absolute minimum standard at ZeroEnergy Design. We believe the 2030 commitment goals are attainable now/today and we are doing our part to make sure they are met.


Fine Homebuilding - Environment for Retirement

Fine Homebuilding magazine’s latest issue includes the HOUSES by DESIGN section with a ZED project article called Environment for Retirement. As long term fans of the publication and winners of the 2017 Fine Homebuilding HOUSES award, ZED is thrilled to receive this continuing coverage.


Boston Home Magazine Story

Boston Home magazine wrote a story about ZED's historic rowhouse in Boston's SouthEnd. 
(A renovated green home in Boston that is both modern + historic simultaneously.)

Boston needs more deep energy retrofits of brownstones and row homes like this!

Great job by John Mucciarone and Stephanie Horowitz of ZeroEnergy Design for beautiful architecture.



Illinois Gets Its First Passive House Institute Certified Home

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After a thorough renovation and completing a rigorous review process, Ellis Passivhaus in Chicago becomes the first Passive House Institute certified home in Illinois.

A development of Kenwood Construction Services with the Passive House consulting services of  ZeroEnergy Design, the Ellis Passivhaus transforms an antiquated 1890’s rowhome into a progressive, urban, green living environment.  

The newly renovated home now provides exceptional energy performance, healthy indoor air quality, thermal comfort, and long term resilience, all within a Chicago row house aesthetic.  


GREEN HOME TOUR - first certified Passive House in Chicago!

ZeroEnergy Design and Kenwood Construction are pleased to announce that the historic greystone Ellis Passivhaus rowhome, which recently underwent a renovation to become the first certified Passive House in Chicago, is open to the public on the 2018 GreenBuilt Home Tour.

The GreenBuilt Home Tour features 15 exceptional, award-winning, and nationally-recognized homes throughout Illinois, which highlight attractive, affordable, and sustainable building practices. Tickets allow access for two people to all the homes.

The Ellis Passivhaus rowhome includes construction by Kenwood Construction, Passive House Consulting and Mechanical Design by ZeroEnergy Design, Architecture by Richard Kasemsarn, and Photos by Elizabeth Harper. The home has recently been certified under the Passive House EnerPHit standard by the Passive House Institute. 

DATES:  Sat July 28 + Sun July 29, 2018


New Book: Passive House Rising to New Heights

The newest Passive House case study book, titled From Small to Extra Large, Passive House Rising to New Heights, has just been released and is free to download!

Great Passive House cases of all scales are included, from single family homes to large multi-family buildings.

Be sure to review ZeroEnergy Design's Passive House consulting cases on:

  • Pages 62-63 with Architect: The Turrett Collaborative

  • Pages 78-79 and 82-83 with Paul A. Castrucci, Architect

  • Pages 84-85 as a ZED firm profile

  • Page 100 with Jane Sanders Architect


LG releases Passive House article

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ZeroEnergy Design (ZED) is pleased that LG, the South Korean multinational manufacturing company offering air source heat pumps and other electronics, just released an article about high performance homes and buildings entitled: "Passive House Is Creating a New Standard for Efficiency". 

The article references three Passive House examples including:

Two ZED consulting projects:
- Hollis Montessori School (Architecture by Windy Hill Associates)
- ABC No Rio Offices & Gallery (Architecture by Paul A. Castrucci Architect)

One ZED architecture project:
- New England Passive House Retreat

ZED encourages widespread adoption of Passive House levels of building performance, and is pleased to cooperate with LG in educating the company's audiences.



RetrofitNY Solution Provider Team

Paul A. Castrucci, Architect together with energy consultant, ZeroEnergy Design, are pleased to announce their Solution Provider Team partnership and prequalification status for NYSERDA RetrofitNY initiative.
RetrofitNY is working to create new solutions to renovate multifamily buildings while achieving or approaching net-zero energy use and creating standardized and scalable processes that will improve residents’ comfort and buildings’ energy performance. 



Fine Homebuilding Podcast

Great podcast by Fine Homebuilding Magazine!
Thanks for the shout out from Brian Pontolilo for your #FavoriteWholeHouse!

Listen at 39:26 in the #podcast:  LISTEN

Brian discusses his 'Better Than Average' #FineHomebuilding ARTICLE

About the ZED #architecture project: MARGATE RESILIENT RESIDENCE

#transitionaldesign #modernarchitecture #healthyhome #energyefficiency #daylighting

Now Practice Now

Turf—Where do we work? How do we work?

Today's urban challenges are reshaping the scale, specialization and composition of design practice. Overlapping boundaries and transdisciplinary thinking is needed to address the contemporary urban condition. Where—and how—do firms, teams and individuals practice design today? Why is this important to the future of practice?

June 14 | 6-8PM | BSA Space, 290 Congress Street, Suite 200, Boston


Framing the topic
Christine Dunn AIA
principal, Sasaki

David Gamble AIA
principal, Gamble Associates

Mark Doughty
general manager, Thoughtforms

Shauna Gillies-Smith ASLA
founding principal, GROUND

Stephanie Horowitz AIA
managing director, ZeroEnergy Design

Daniel St. Clair
managing director, Spaulding & Slye Investments

Carole Wedge FAIA
president, Shepley Bulfinch

Town hall discussion
All are invited to participate.

About the Now Practice Now Series

Equity. Inclusion. Design. Technology. Environment. Resources. Innovation.

Architecture practice now faces significant challenges. Changes in technology, production, and collaboration are altering traditional modes of working. The Now Practice Now workshops explore the means and methods of transforming practice. The series is for those who now practice.

Jay Wickersham FAIA, 2018 BSA president, and the Now Practice Now committee invite you to join us for three candid discussions. Together we'll create a framework for the Now Practice Now Summit in Fall 2018.              

Have your say: @BSAAIA #NOWPRACTICE.