This Brooklyn townhouse is the first Passive Plus house in the United States, aiming to achieve net-zero energy use by utilizing rooftop solar panels.

Project Name: First Passive Plus House in the United States
Studio Name: Baxt Ingui Architects, P.C

Project size: 4860 ft2
Site size: 2500 ft2
Completion date: 2015
Building levels: 5
Location: Brooklyn , United States
Photography: John Muggenborg

First Passive Plus House in the United States by Baxt Ingui Architects, P.C - Sheet2
Exterior ©John Muggenborg

The original house received a restoration of the front façade, a rooftop addition with mansard roof, and a large rear addition doubling the floor area. In the rear addition, the home features a sculptural steel stair housed with double height fenestration, allowing light to pour down into the lower levels. The large sliding glass Zola doors allow for a comfortable indoor-outdoor experience. The extension also includes a new, modern kitchen with a 48” gas range and a hood venting to the exterior.

First Passive Plus House in the United States by Baxt Ingui Architects, P.C - Sheet1
Play room ©John Muggenborg

The original wood burning fireplace in the parlor room was retained incorporating a custom glass door enclosing the firebox. A second fireplace was added in the new top floor addition, where you can also enjoy expansive views through the new floor-to-ceiling Zola doors to the roof deck. A south facing solar canopy installed by Brooklyn Solar Works allows the triple slider to remain open during a rainstorm and shades the expansive glass from the summer sun, all while producing energy.

First Passive Plus House in the United States by Baxt Ingui Architects, P.C - Sheet10
Kitchen ©John Muggenborg

BIA Interiors was inspired by the new light filled open concept, which is normally not seen in townhomes. Working to maintain the cohesive feeling from the original home into the new extension, a light color palette was used throughout, and interesting pops of color and texture were introduced through the fabrics, rugs, and furniture.

By using Passive House standards, the need to have radiators at windows was eliminated allowing more freedom for long decorative curtains and built-ins. Minimal ductwork allowed for a lot of flexibility with lighting and furniture layouts. The house is a true reflection of the collaboration between architect, designer and homeowner providing a fantastic space to entertain family and friends.


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