April 6, 2018

We wanted to extend our congratulations to Harvard’s Center for Green Buildings and Cities (CGBC) – a part of the Harvard University Graduate School of Design (GSD).  On Wednesday, the CGBC marked the completion of the transformation of its headquarters into an ultra-efficient building, now dubbed HouseZero. The comprehensive retrofit of the 1940’s stick house was spearheaded by Ali Malkawi, professor of architectural technology at the GSD, and the founding director of the Harvard CGBC. The goal of the project was to demonstrate how companies and homeowners can respond to a worldwide problem – highly inefficient existing buildings. Previously, it was only thought possible to achieve ultra-high levels of energy efficiency in new construction. This multi-dimensional project will serve as a living prototype, demonstrating how existing building stock can take advantage of new energy efficient technologies and techniques.  


HouseZero’s retrofit design does not require a HVAC system, uses no day-time electric light, provides its own 100% ventilation, requires almost zero energy, and produces zero carbon emissions, including embodied energy of materials.  It also features an experimental lab that is hardwired to the building’s energy exchange system. The lab will monitor the structure and its systems, allowing for the testing and optimization of the new intelligent technologies, façades, and materials. The data will be made public with the intention of giving property owners better insight into how to transform their own properties, and hopefully inspiring the next generation of ultra-efficient buildings.


Solect is honored to be a technology partner to the HouseZero project, contributing our solar and storage solutions. We commend Ali Malkawi, his team at CGBC and the many partners who brought this project to fruition. We congratulate them on achieving a paradigm shift in energy efficiency in existing structures, and for showcasing the benefits available to both companies and homeowners.


To read more about HouseZero:


Harvard CGBC:  http://harvardcgbc.org/