City to spend another $120,000 on passivhaus

Passivhaus is a construction standard that requires very little energy to maintain a comfortable living environment, achieved by utilizing very high levels of insulation, efficient windows and doors, while ensuring the home is built with very low level of air leakage.

“This was a pilot, we’re probably running over cost by I would say $20-$30 at this stage,” Director of Corporate Services, Mike Roy said. “…as with any other builder, one you build the same house over and over, the cost escalades downwards through efficiency.”


The location of the passivhaus is 9904 – 95 street. The house includes 3 bedrooms, upstairs and downstairs living space, 1 office, 2 full bathrooms and a powder room.

In August 2013, Council approved another $150,000 for the project, at the time bringing the total cost of the home to $490,000.

The City still says the cost of the house remains on par with the cost to build a new home in Fort St. John. The passivhaus is 1,895 square feet and with the value of the land included, the cost is $350 per square foot, similar to newly constructed homes in Fort St. John.

The City plans to keep the house as a demonstration project for the next two to three years. The plan is to rent the home out and show developers and the community a passivhaus can be built at similar costs to a normal home. According to the City Manager, at least one developer has already expressed interest in building more passivhaus’ in Fort St. John.

This project also will be featured at the Passive and Low Energy Architecture conference being held in mid-December in Ahmedabad, India.