We are finally ready to share our plans with you! Thanks to Terry and Gerry at Millennium Enterprises for working with us to establish a preliminary budget and brainstorm additional ways to simplify and save costs. We have made the decision to go ahead and finalize our construction drawings and get actual bids to hopefully be able to start construction in the spring of this year.
We are working with Katy Hollbacher of Beyond Efficiency to model the house using the Passive House PHPP system, which will inform us on detailed building performance based on our choices of windows, insulation, and the like, and this information will be used to size our (hopefully minimal) heating system as well as ventilation system. More details to follow about this exciting process with real usable data! Our goals are Net Zero Energy and depending on the model information, we may opt to go through the formal Passive House Certification process as well. We'd love to do this for our own education and experience, but the climate in Pacifica is so mild, that we are not sure if it warrants the additional expense of several thousand dollars for certification. Thoughts?
We are working with Bruce King to design the structure as efficiently as possible. It is refreshing to work with an engineer who brings creativity and a commitment to sustainability to the process! Plus he's got a great sense of humor! One of our main goals for the project was to have fun in the process - life is way too short!
We do not usually publish floor plans for our client's privacy, but are happy to share these with you. The plan is designed for handicapped accessibility on the main floor level, with a lot of flexibility to the lower level spaces as we (or future owners) age. The back of the house faces almost due south, perfect for our solar array and large windows with solar gain. The west facing windows in the family room will a have a lovely view to the ocean! North side (front) faces a busy street, and windows have been minimized. Many art projects are envisioned for the front in particular! We are debating about the fireplace...Christine wants a very efficient gas burning unit for heat and atmosphere. Bob would like to avoid fossil fuels completely...Should we take a poll?
Please feel free give us your feedback, and introduce us to any subcontractors you love, especially local ones.
Christine and Bob