Built by Re:Vision Architecture as an addition to a 19th Century Quaker house, this spectacular new design pushes the envelope of sustainability, all without disrupting the history of the place. The LEED Gold fusion of the old and the new has propelled the project into a net-zero energy realm, fit with an efficient shell, passive cooling, natural daylighting and a solar electric array. The project's environmental impact is reduced through a long list of green features that doesn't end at energy performance. The addition also makes use of reclaimed materials, sustainably harvested wood and a rainwater catchment system. The project located in Camden, DE is a complete gesture highlighting the potential of low-impact building, even on sensitive historic sites.
The 150 year old Quaker house, now a small museum, needed structural improvements and a new place for gatherings. The design takes advantage of the work by inserting underfloor heating tubing into the old building. New, but historically accurate, windows also help with efficiency.
The annex, adjacent to the original meeting house is a high performing building which shares the same heating system powered by a ground source heat pump. The roof is made using SIP panels with a high R-value and no thermal bridging, while the rest of the walls are filled with soy-based expanding foam.
The new building is completely naturally cooled by upper awning windows, which automatically open at night to allow cool air to flush the space. Those windows also allow ample light into the space, which is supplemented by CFLs and LEDs. The space is also solar heated when the sun shines in the winter, but shaded by overhangs in the summer.
Rain water is captured in a 2,000 gallon tank for toilets and other non-potable uses. What cannot be reclaimed is retained on site with bioswells. The wood floors are also reclaimed from a deconstructed building. The FSC cedar siding is locally harvested and soften the new building’s look.
The 12.6 Kw solar array, while not huge, is more than enough energy for the new building and provides enough to supplement for the historic gathering house making the entire project net-zero energy.