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IceBox Challenge, Part 1 on High Performance Build

Mark Wille and Shaun St Amour, talk about the history of the annual Ice Box Challenge event. This program started off in Brussels, Belgium. This is one of the locations where Passive House took off. This experiment was about creating a small box (home) with the Passive House standard practices and another one that was built to latest building code standards. Both were built offsite and brought to a location where they would get the most attention in their community.

The two boxes were filled with the same amount of ice blocks. After several weeks, the boxes are watched and then measured with a scale to determine how much ice was left. The box that had the most ice remaining, proved that the method of building with an air tight envelope, having more insulation, and better windows was the better built box. The consistent winner was the box built with the Passive House principles.

In 2017, Vancouver Canada decided to accept the Ice_Box challenge, along with a design and build challenge. This event was community involvement with all people that love construction. Stark Architecture and E3 Eco Group designed both the Passive House and code boxes. The better built box met the Passive House standards as it had minimal thermal bridges, continuous airtight layers, lots of insulation, high performing windows and additional, was built with offsite construction. Shaun St Amour participated and joined this effort with great success.

Check back to learn what is happening for 2023 Ice_Box Challenge in Part 2, with Mark and Shaun and Offsite Dirt.


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