Take a slideshow tour of Passivhaus projects in Europe

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Dormitory

credit: Bronwyn Barry

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OeAD Dormitory

In the USA, if people have heard of the Passive House concept at all, they think about seriously energy-efficient houses that you can "heat with a hairdryer." It's a growing movement, with its first big international conference happening in Vancouver in September. It originated in Germany, and Bronwyn Barry of the American Passive House Network recently returned from a conference in Austria where she toured a number of projects, and has shared her photos with TreeHugger.

The most surprising thing is that these are big buildings, there isn't a house in the bunch. This building is actually a dormitory; Bronwyn writes:

My digs for a few days: Passivhaus Dormitory street view, including larger, family size units with orange shades. (The streetlamp hanging from the building in the foreground is typical of Vienna.)

To learn more about Passivhaus, here are some past posts that explain it:
Forget Energy Star and LEED, Green Building is Passivhaus
Passive Design and Passive House Mean Two Different Things
A Passiv Haus in Urbana, Illinois