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Two Energy-Efficient 'Passive Houses' Listed For Sale In Stamford

An artist's rendering of an energy-efficicent Passive House built on Campbell Drive in Stamford.
An artist's rendering of an energy-efficicent Passive House built on Campbell Drive in Stamford. Photo Credit: William Pitt Sotheby's Realty

STAMFORD, Conn. – Two new houses have been listed for sale that are the first Passive Houses built in Stamford, which is considered the most energy-efficient for of construction in the world, according to William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty. 

The two properties, both located on Campbell Drive in Stamford and surrounded by woodlands, were designed by Westport architect Lucien Vita of Vita Design Group. They were built by Salvatore Zarrella of Construction Management Group in New Canaan.

One of the passive houses in Stamford, a traditional farmhouse, is offered for sale at $1.779 million. The other is an innovative modern home with a price tag of $1.695 million. 

“The homes are at once practical and beautiful, with a superior quality of building,” said Stamford agent Walter Block, who has the listings. “The amount of interest we have generated so far in these properties, just from the initial design renderings alone, has been tremendous.” 

Physicist Wolfgang Feist is credited with developing the standard for Passivhaus in Germany during the 1990s, including three simple elements: heating and cooling energy criteria, electrical usage and the air tightness of the building envelope — the home’s shell. As long as they meet these criteria, Passive Houses can be built in any architectural style with any building materials. 

“Passive Houses are 85 percent to 90 percent more efficient than the average home, with a building envelope so air tight they effectively run on the amount of energy required from a blowdriver," said Zarrella. 

"Imagine essentially arriving at net zero for energy use—that is, a home that produces the same amount of or more energy than it consumes. How many problems could we solve then? If net zero is the Holy Grail in construction standards, going Passive first is the best way to get there." 

Common techniques in Passive building include orienting the interiors to take full advantage of sunlight; adding thick, highly insulated walls; and installing European-type airtight windows and heat recovery ventilation systems that exchange indoor and outdoor air efficiently and provide superior air quality. Also, the heating and cooling systems are tiny compared to conventional construction. 

For more information on the properties at C1a and C1b Campbell Drive in Stamford, see the William Pitt website.

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