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New York Passive House pushes for passive home standard in NYC

20 Garden Place in Brooklyn Heights is the

20 Garden Place in Brooklyn Heights is the first certified passive house townhouse in a city landmark district. Photo Credit: New York Passive House

Maya Ezzeddine wants the passive house to be New York City’s building standard.

The international passive house standard has become more prevalent in recent years, with several Brooklyn residences built or renovated to be passive — or zero energy.

Ezzeddine is the manager at New York Passive House, which advocates for energy-efficient homes in the New York region.

The standard reduces energy waste by setting limits on electricity use and through the use of airtight enclosures that can reduce heating and cooling needs by 90%.

In NYC, homes that have been renovated to follow the standard include 23 Park Place in Park Slope, the city’s first certified passive house, and 20 Garden Place in Brooklyn Heights, the city’s first such house in a landmark district.

In addition to reduced energy costs, another benefit of a passive home is fewer repairs than buildings that follow standard regulations, Ezzeddine said.

“Building to code is the worst possible building that you’re allowed to build,” she said. “A passive house is the best possible building you can build.”

New York Passive House is pushing to get the standard instituted into the mayor’s plans to create affordable housing for New Yorkers and is working with the administration and community boards to demonstrate that these houses could save the city environmentally and financially in the long run.

“Passive house is really the only way to achieve the mayor’s goal,” she said.


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