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Low-cost construction method for the KlimaHau

Feb 01, 2007
The provinces of South Tyrol/I and Lower Saxony/D have co-developed the world's first ever energy-saving prefabricated house based on a low-cost construction method. The aim is to establish and use the South Tyrol KlimaHaus as an alternative construction method for Africa and disaster areas.
An important prerequisite for the project's initiators, however, is that South Tyrol should certify the building. The African Sustainable House, to give it its correct name, must satisfy certain criteria, particularly where size and costs are concerned. The energy-saving prefab house boasts excellent thermal insulation properties for both heat and cold.
The passive house is also becoming increasingly popular in the Alpine region itself. Since the start of the year all new buildings erected by public utility housing agencies in Vorarlberg/A must be built using the passive house construction method. It means that heating costs per square metre in passive-house residential estates amount to only one or two euros a year. Already last autumn there was a rush in demand for the energy advice services provided by the federal province of Vorarlberg. Besides public utility housing promoters, more and more private developers were also keen to obtain information. As the largest such agency for public utility housing in Vorarlberg, the Vogewosi housing company is already carried out planning work for three residential estates built in accordance with the passive-house standard. Vogewosi is also pushing ahead with the energy-based rehabilitation of its post-war housing stock.
In January 2006 and January 2007 the French towns of Gap and Grenoble commissioned thermographic infrared aerial photographs of their roof landscapes. The aim is to help people improve the overall management of their energy consumption. The aerial photographs were taken at low altitude to determine building heat loss and reproduce it in map form. As a rule more than 30% of heat loss from buildings is due to poorly insulated roofs. In France the energy consumption of private households and the service sector, at 42%, is still way ahead of that of industry (23%) or transport (32%). Home owners will now have the opportunity to find out about the thermal status of their properties so that any necessary measures can be taken.
Sources and information: www.fierabolzano.it/comunicati (de/it/en), www.ville-gap.fr/Sources/francais/presse (fr),
www.igpassivhaus.at (de)