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Cottage Street

a Net Zero Deep Energy Retrofit for a young family

Project Location: Amherst, MA
Builder: Holden Builders

Construction Management: Steve Ferrari of FCM Smart Build
Approx. SF: 3268
Project Type: deep energy retrofit
Standards/Certifications: 1000 Home Challenge & Pilot Project for National Grid's Deep Energy Retrofit Program
Project Timeline: 2008-2009

with Coldham & Hartman Architects


Project Story:


Years of deferred maintenance made this 1880s home a perfect retrofit project for a young family looking to settle down in the Pioneer Valley. The project began as a renovation and - with the right clients at the right time - became a Net Zero Deep Energy Retrofit.


With Steve Ferrari of FCM Smart Build leading construction management, and Holden Builders heading up construction, this became our first project using exterior insulation. It was a great test drive for a package that would become standard: an electric heat pump for heating and cooling, a balanced whole-house ventilation system, and clean, modern interiors.This super-insulated, airtight home needs very little energy to provide for a family of four, and it makes all the power it needs on the roof with solar panels.

This project won a Fine Homebuilding prize for Best Remodel in 2012 an a New England Sustainable Energy Alliance (NESEA) zero energy award. (See the case study here.)

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