From the Construct Ireland archives


Welcome to the archive of Construct Ireland, the award-winning Irish green building magazine which spawned Passive House Plus. The feature articles in these archives span from 2003 to 2011, including case studies on hundreds of Irish sustainable buildings and dozens of investigative pieces on everything from green design and building methods, to the economic arguments for low energy construction. While these articles appeared in an Irish publication, the vast majority of the content is relevant to our new audience in the UK and further afield. That said, readers from some regions should take care when reading some of the design advice - lots of south facing glazing in New Zealand may not be the wisest choice, for instance. Dip in, and enjoy!

Why Knott?

0204timbertitle.jpg
Lorna Kelly, of the Irish Timber Frame Manafacturers Association, takes a look at IrishTimber Frame

Dream factory

Dream Factory
The rapid emergence of sustainable building in Ireland has been heavily influenced by the techniques of early-adopters extending from Scandinavia, to Canada, to Germany and Austria. John Hearne visited a recently completed timber home in Galway which uses Austrian know-how to couple air-tightness, high levels of insulation and healthy materials with a sustainable approach to heating and ventilation

Sustainable Cement

The cement industry is well known as being amongst the worst culprits for emitting CO2, a seemingly unavoidable side effect of its production. However, as Peter Seymour, Business Development Manager with Ecocem Ireland Ltd explains, there is a strong, eco-friendly competitive alternative to Portland cement that is being specified in a variety of high profile construction projects in Ireland.

Measured efforts

How SEI’s pilot energy refurb initiative is shaping up
Earlier this year constructireland.ie broke the news of the introduction of the pilot Home Energy Saving Scheme, a new grant funding programme designed to stimulate the en masse refurbishment of Ireland’s poorly performing existing housing stock. John Hearne travelled to one of the pilot areas to see how the scheme is working on the ground, and discover how the scheme is developing.

Part L changes

Part L changes
On 7 June 2011 environment minister Phil Hogan TD signed the latest changes to Part L of the building regulations into law, which will make it mandatory for all new homes to be 60% more energy efficient than the standards at the peak of the construction boom. Jeff Colley sheds some light on the key changes

Social Capital

Social Capital
Local authorities upgraded hundreds of houses last year under a €20m government scheme, and the Department of Environment has doubled funding for 2010. With local energy agencies playing a key role on the ground, the programme offers vital lessons for keeping quality high in energy retrofit schemes. Words: Lenny Antonelli

All weather house

A sustainable building must address more than energy, carbon or materials, argues Irish born architect Stephen Roe of up-and-coming London architects Roewu – it must respond to its environment. Not only does Roe’s design for the All Weather House achieve that, it boasts green materials, renewable heating and generous insulation too.

Green Loans

O310-GreenLoansTITLE.jpg
For the first time in several years, 2007 will see a budget deficit in Ireland so the question must be asked: where does this leave state aid for sustainable building? Construct Ireland’s Jeff Colley and Jason Walsh propose a new approach to improving the energy efficiency of existing homes that might even fix a few of the difficulties seen in the last eighteen months

Out of the ordinary

0309-outoftheordinarytitle.jpg
It has long been anticipated that the cost of sustainable building will come down as it enters the mass market, benefiting from economies of scale and greater industry confidence in low impact techniques and technologies as they become more familiar. Jay Stuart, managing director of integrated sustainable design consultants Delap and Waller EcoCo reveals a Kildare housing project which is likely to rapidly accelerate this process, and convince even the most conservative elements of the industry that low energy, low carbon building can be achieved at little or no additional cost

Deconstruct Ireland

Deconstruct Ireland
The environmental impact of the built environment extends far beyond energy consumption and carbon emissions throughout a building’s intended lifespan. Architect and sustainable design consultant Sinéad Cullen of DW EcoCo & BE Architecture explains why there’s a need to design buildings that can be deconstructed rather than destroyed once they reach their end of life, and looks at the obstacles to be overcome to make this happen.