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Princedale Road

Location: West London
Completion Status: December 2010 Occupancy: Occupied March 2011
Architect: Paul Davis + Partners Consultant: Princedale Ltd (Philip Proffit); Eight Associates environmental consultant (Jean Pierre Wack), Green Tomato Energy (Project Manager))
Contractor: Philip Proffit (Princedale Ltd) Client: Octavia Housing
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100 Princedale Road is an innovative experiment aiming to reduce the carbon emissions of existing social homes by 80%. Octavia Housing coordinated the transformation of a three storey Victorian terraced house to Passivhaus standards, through funding received from the Technology Strategy Board’s Retrofit for the future competition. The home now produces around 83% less CO2 emissions, uses 94% less energy and saves the tenants in excess of £900 a year on fuel bills. The home was registered as the first certified refurbishment to Passivhaus standards in the UK.

The performance and comfort levels of the home are being monitored for two years minimum, alongside two other homes refurbished by Octavia Housing to Decent Homes and Decent Homes ‘plus’ standards for comparative purposes.


‘I hadn’t heard of Passivhaus before but it has been much easier to live in than I expected; I haven’t had to adjust any of the settings once since we moved in, and it’s more comfortable than any house I’ve lived in before -it just feels normal, it feels like home. I thought it would be nice for a local person from the community to get involved in this type of project and it’s sparked a lot of interest already with my friends. The main benefit is the savings we will make on bills – that will mean a lot. I haven’t been able to take the kids on holiday before; it will mean a brighter future for me and the kids.’

Bouchra Bakali, 36. Tenant at 100 Princedale Road.

‘This project certainly is one of the most advanced worldwide.’

Dr Wolfgang Feist - Founder of Passivhaus. 

‘The renovation at 100 Princedale Road is a milestone in the history of thermal renovation - it has achieved the demanding “Passivhaus” standard, the leading standard for low energy building. What makes this a milestone is that this is a building in a conservation area,  where external wall insulation is not generally acceptable, and that it has dealt with the difficult issues of internal wall insulation and building airtightness by an overall concept of lining the shell with a continuous box. The airtightness of the building is ten to twenty times better than most current building projects. This surely will be one of the buildings that shape how we learn to deal with our existing housing stock.

Peter Warm - Passivhaus certifier.





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