Passivhaus Principles Widely Adopted in Architectural Design

Posted on by Dominic Poznanski
Posted in Latest news.

Events like the RIBA House of the Year and the Dezeen Awards showcase extraordinary architectural design. They are the catwalk of the construction world; illustrating the possibilities when boundaries and budgets can be expanded.

Most of these designs are unique; they aren’t practical for large-scale building developments. They do, however, present influential concepts, design principles and finishing that can be more widely adopted. Like the High Street brand versions of a catwalk look, building developers can take the essence of these iconic designs and interpret them in a commercially viable way.

Common Design Features in the Shortlisted Properties

The RIBA House of the Year 2022 shortlist includes 20 outstanding properties, each with a distinct aesthetic, yet there is some common ground. Great emphasis is put on:

  • Blending these buildings into their surroundings
  • Incorporating natural materials and forms, predominantly timber
  • Sustainable design and building materials
  • Energy efficiency, with a distinct shift towards adoption of Passivhaus principles

What are the Passivhaus Principles?

Passivhaus principles are an international standard of quality design and construction. It includes achieving thermal efficiency targets. Superior windows and insulation, airtight construction, controlled ventilation and heat recovery all play a part in realising the standard.

Despite not reaching the exacting standards of Passivhaus, a growing number of architects and builders are adopting practices that enhance thermal efficiency. This is in part due to Government targets for energy performance.

By 2025, all new build properties need to be highly energy efficient, use low carbon heating and be zero carbon ready. The aim is to make homes more comfortable living environments, whilst lowering energy bills and reducing the impact on global ecosystems. It is a demanding target, yet, progress is promising.*

What has this got to do with OUTDOOR Letterboxes?

You might be reading this wondering why we, a letterbox supplier, are talking about buildings. The reason is that you cannot have an airtight home or optimise thermal efficiency if there is a gap in the front door.

Most UK homes have a front door with a letter flap for mail delivery. This enables the flow of cool draughts in and warm air out, especially if it is wedged open with a stack of post. It can certainly hinder aims to meet the new standard, yet we still see them on every new development that is being built.

The greatest frustration is that there is a viable alternative. The front door can remain a solid and sealed entry to the property if outdoor letterboxes or parcel boxes are installed. A separate outdoor letterbox offers a secure and weather-resistant place for mail. Alongside wall mounted letterboxes are through wall or gate options or free standing parcel boxes.

Parcel Boxes for Contemporary Homes

Contemporary homes are designed for modern living. With this in consideration, isn’t a parcel box now a better option for most homeowners than a letterbox? We have become a nation of online buyers, so it’s as common for packages to be delivered as a letter or magazine.

A parcel box means no deliveries left on the doorstep or flung over the gate. It means a secure place to leave orders and no need to pop back out to collect missed deliveries. Surely, this is what the modern homeowner wants?

Planning Mailboxes into Home Design & Build

It is advisable to consider functions like mail delivery early in the design stages. Whether you want a through the wall letterbox on the boundary wall, a parcel box at the end of the drive or a lockable letterbox by the front door, planning can save last-minute headaches.

We are often contacted by builders and project managers at the finishing stages of a development. They urgently need a delivery of letterboxes to complete a project and want the fastest turnaround. Whilst next day delivery is our usual service, this is dependent on having the right number of items in stock.

Retrofitting mailboxes can also create additional and unnecessary work, especially for through the wall solutions. With planning, installation is simple.

Quality Home Post Box Suppliers

Whether you are working on a one-off architectural vision or the latest housing development, external post boxes provide a viable option for maintaining energy efficiency. It’s time to ditch front door letter flaps. Letterbox4you is a leading supplier of European manufactured external letterboxes and parcel boxes. Our range includes Danish, Swedish, Polish and Italian designs.