Refurbished House

Refurbished House

Overview

BRE Scotland led the development of the Refurbished House on the Innovation Park as part of the European ERACO STAR project. This three country project (Belgian Building Research Institute, Passief Huis Platform, Belgium and Lund University, Faculty of Engineering, Sweden are European project partners) focuses on the technical refurbishment of typical dwellings in a Sustainable Thermal Acoustic Retrofit (STAR). The ERACO STAR project aimed to focus on 'real' sustainable renovation of dwellings considering the acoustic aspects alongside thermal properties.

In Scotland we replace the housing stock at a rate of less than 1% per year. It is therefore imperative that we improve the performance of the existing housing stock, if we are to achieve the CO2 reduction targets mooted for 2020 and 2050. The Refurbished House will provide a research base for how this can be done most effectively in the future and will provide valuable information on cost and performance of retrofit solutions.

Using historical design information and traditional materials, a full-scale ‘four-in-a-block’ dwelling similar to over 250,000 existing Scottish homes, has been constructed and refurbished. Each of the four apartments (G1, G2, F1, F2) has been refurbished using different approaches, materials and technologies to showcase four options for upgrading (see information on accompanying app).

The actual performance of these retrofit solutions, and the associated cost of the interventions, is currently being monitored and measured to determine effectiveness. A ‘baseline’ model has been created to help identify improvements in each of the four upgrades. This will provide valuable information for the development of a retrofit strategy to tackle the building stock of this type Scotland.

These properties generally referred to as '4-in-a-block' (where there are two flats on the ground floor, and two on the first floor) have been constructed using different building systems across Scotland and are considered to be some of the worst performing apartment building types both thermally and acoustically. Although there are approximately 250,000 of these in Scotland, their build style (1930's to 1970's) is similar to cavity block walls found in 3 million dwellings in England.

The project is designed to assess the cost effectiveness of fabric upgrades for this important building style, for walls, windows, roofs and services. Indoor air quality tests, air tightness tests, and acoustic testing has been undertaken as well as detailed thermal analysis from inbuilt thermal sensors, thermography and thermal modelling.

Househillwood '4-in-a-blocks'
Househillwood '4-in-a-blocks'

Saltire Society Housing Design Awards

The Refurbished House has received a Commendation in the 'Housing in Innovation' category of the Saltire Society Housing Design Awards 2015. The Housing Design Awards reward and advocate innovation and excellence in Scottish house building and place-making.

The Refurbished House at the BRE Innovation Park @Ravenscraig has received a Commendation in the ‘Innovation in Housing’ category of the Saltire Society Housing Design Awards 2015. The Housing Design Awards reward and advocate innovation and excellence in Scottish house building and place-making. - See more at: http://www.retrofitscotland.org/news-events/2015/06/news-round-up/#sthash.xvcBYUqH.dpuf
The Refurbished House at the BRE Innovation Park @Ravenscraig has received a Commendation in the ‘Innovation in Housing’ category of the Saltire Society Housing Design Awards 2015. The Housing Design Awards reward and advocate innovation and excellence in Scottish house building and place-making. - See more at: http://www.retrofitscotland.org/news-events/2015/06/news-round-up/#sthash.xvcBYUqH.dpuf

Refurbished House: BRE Innovation Park @Ravenscraig

A showcase of the Refurbished House at the BRE Innovation Park @Ravenscraig, plus a wider look at the retrofit challenges facing Scotland and the presentation of the new app 'BRERetrofitLab'.

Design

BRE worked with Kraft Architecture and Hannah-Reed Consulting Engineers to create detailed drawings of the '4-in-a-block' test building. The design is based on historical references with input from Historic Scotland and North Lanarkshire Council. These drawings provided the basis of planning and building warrant applications. BRE appointed Cruden Building and Renewals as the main contractor to oversee the construction of the test building. The ERACO project team, along with the architects, Kraft, and the developers have designed a retrofit strategy for each of the four apartments (G1, G2, F1, F2), which can now be viewed in the Refurbished House on plot 9.

 Flat G1Flat F1Flat G2Flat F2
Imposed Restrictions

Occupied

Minimal Disruption

Occupied

Minimal Disruption

Un-occupied

No Gas

Historic

Un-occupied

No Gas

Refurb Approach

External Fabric

Basic Heating Upgrade

External Fabric

Full Heating Upgrade

Internal Fabric Internal Fabric
SAP Target 76 82 85 83
Section 7 Target   Bronze, 2010 Pass   Silver, 2010 Pass
         
Heating

gas combi boiler

gas flue save technology

gas boiler

4m2 solar thermal panels

electric combi heat store

underfloor heating

air source heat pump (ASHP)

cylinder with radiators

Walls

cavity fill

external wall insulation

cavity fill

external wall insulation

cavity fill

moisture buffering internal wall insulation

acoustic treatment lining

cavity fill

internal wall insulation (Phenolic and Aerogel)

Loft / Ceiling   additional insulation acoustic ceiling treatment additional insulation
Floors     insulation to ground floor acoustic treatment to main rooms
Ventilation standard intermittent room fans positive input ventilation (PIV) intermittent individual room heat recovery (kitchen and bathroom) full house MVHR system
Windows (U-value [W/m2K]) 1.2 1.2 1.5 (traditional style) 0.9
Airtightness Target 6.53q50 7.53q50 6.11q50 6.04q50
Additional Features

independent living adaptations

interior designed by IKEA

    3kW solar PV array

 

Refurbished House Interior
Refurbished House Interior

Materials & Technologies

A wide range of innovative products and technologies has been incorporated into the design of the Visitor Centre. Homegrown timber has also been utilised.

BrickShield External Insulation

BrickShield External Insulation

The BrickShield product incorporates a Rockwool insulation board, covered in brick slips to provide a traditional brick finish. This external insulation is used in combination with cavity wall insulation on the rear of G1 and F1 in the Refurbished House to provide maximum thermal performance.

View Product

Positive Input Ventilation Unit

F1 has a whole house positive input ventilation (PIV) control unit installed in the loft space. The system circulates air around the home, to improve the internal air quality and reduce the likelihood of condensation occurring.

View Product

Performance

The actual performance of these retrofit solutions, and the associated cost of the interventions, is being monitored and measured to determine effectiveness. A ‘baseline’ model has been created to help identify improvements in each of the four upgrades.

This will provide valuable information for organisations developing a retrofit strategy for similar properties in Scotland.

Although only four retrofit options have been built, a number of others have been designed throughout the project. These additional options are presented in an iPad app, released on 16th June. The app will allow users to replace or change products within the apartments and see the resulting improvement (or otherwise) in energy performance and the resulting change in costs. This app provides information on additional upgrade options to provide a wider choice of potential upgrading strategies.

In addition to the BRE/ESRU testing that will be undertaken on all the other properties at the Innovation Park @Ravenscraig, Edinburgh Napier University are to conduct air tightness and acoustic tests as part of their involvement in the ERACO STAR project.

Partners