Canada's first LEED V4 Platinum house

Canada Green Building Council President Thomas Mueller calls Ecohome's Edelweiss House "A phenomenal achievement".

The Edelweiss House, Canada's first LEED V4 Platinum
The Edelweiss House, Canada's first LEED V4 Platinum © Ecohome

We are pleased to announce that the Edelweiss House in Wakefield, QC has just received final certification of Platinum under the recently released LEED V4 for Homes program. 

As building rating systems drive building codes to greater levels of performance, the rating systems themselves need a periodic upgrade to stay ahead of the curve; enter LEED version 4 (V4).

When the Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC) anounced that the LEED for Homes rating system would raise the bar soon with the LEED V4 program, we were at the time mulling over the idea of building a demonstration house as a teaching tool and decided to give V4 a test drive. 

We were already planning on building an ecologically responsible, super-efficient, passively-heated house, so much of the LEED program would be happening anyway.

“The Edelweiss House is a phenomenal achievement - the first Canadian project to meet the stringent requirements of the latest version of LEED at its highest level", said Thomas Mueller, President and CEO of the CaGBC. “I commend Ecohome for being a leader in the Canadian home building community and for demonstrating to the industry that high sustainability standards can be achieved right here in Canada, right now.” 

 

What is Canada's greenest home? Can such a label even be awarded? Hard to say; there are so many variables and criteria to consider. But with a heating requirement equal to that of Passivhaus, top points for energy efficiency of LEED, a slew of recycled materials and excellent interior air quality, we'd like to think the Edelweiss House would be a contender.

It's a simply designed, passively heated slab-on-grade bungalow capable of housing a family of 4 comfortably. And best of all, it was done well within a conventional building budget. 

The premise of the Edelweiss House was to focus primarily on extreme performance, durability, healthy air quality and above all - affordability. Performance homes don't have to blow the budget and affordable houses don't have to be energy hogs. The energy savings in the Edelweiss house are so extreme that it would be cheaper to live in this house than a house built simply to meet the base requirements of building code. 

The Edelweiss House is in Quebec, so it does benefit from lower than average power rates, but homeowners in other parts of the country should not immediately write-off the idea of heating a house like this with electricity based on high daytime rates. A house such as this requires very little heat to begin with, but its passive heating and ability to retain heat would make it very easy to limit any heating to off-peak hours. 

For more information on the house and its construction, we have documented the entire process for a recently released video series available for free on our website. We will also be giving a 3-part webinar series through the CaGBC on the construction and, if you're anywhere near the national capital region, we run day-long workshops and private tours.

LEED Platinum Edelweiss House
© Ecohome

LEED Platinum Edelweiss House
© Ecohome

LEED Platinum Edelweiss House
© Ecohome

LEED Platinum Edelweiss House
© Ecohome

LEED Platinum Edelweiss House
© Ecohome

LEED Platinum Edelweiss House
© Ecohome