March 2014: News that a £5m contract has been awarded “by the London Borough of Tower Hamlets for the refurbishment of Stebon Primary School. The school will be the first Passivhaus School in London and only the sixth in the UK to be delivered under the highly sustainable Passivhaus standards, which are more traditionally used in house building.”
A submission to Tower Hamlets council as part of the planning application sets out some detail of how the refurb will seek to achieve a passivhaus standard:
- The sustainability and energy strategy have informed the building design. Passive design strategies have been adopted and include good orientation, compact building form, low U values, high air tightness, thermal mass, maximizing natural daylight internally, and solar control to southerly facades.
- Passivhaus utilises passive solar gain and night time purge ventilation in summer, coupled with heat recovery and rigorous thermal and airtightness requirements to greatly reduce energy consumption.
The report goes on to say to “achieve Passivhaus certification requires:
- Considered form and orientation – typically compact and east-west orientation making Stebon a good contender
- High levels of insulation
- Elimination of thermal bridges
- Air tightness
- Mechanical ventilation with heat recovery (MVHR)
- Winter solar gains
- Summer natural ventilation with night-time cooling”
An energy statement for the development provides further detail.