Architeam Award Sustainability Medal Winner 2019 Owl Woods Passive House Passivhaus Trentham

WE WON! ArchiTeam Sustainability Medal 2019

We’ve been so focused on our current client’s projects, we almost forgot to officially announce this news! We were honored to be recognised by our peers, by being awarded the 2019 ArchiTeam Sustainability Medal for our ‘Owl Woods Passive House’ project!


ArchiTeam Cooperative’s Annual Awards program showcases the very best in architecture from Australia’s small, medium and emerging architects. With almost 150 entries this year, the awards program is gaining momentum and recognition in the industry. The Sustainability Medal is awarded to the project entry with the most outstanding sustainability credentials.


The judges praised the project, saying it,

“Raises the bar for what is achievable in Sustainable Architecture and homebuilding. This project is in line to be only the 5th (certified) Passivhaus single-detached home in Victoria. It is a project that demonstrates that the stringent requirements to achieve this certification can work in harmony with good design. The Owl Woods Passive House pavilions reach into the landscape and contain beautiful spaces that achieve a level of energy efficiency that all Architects should aspire to in their work.”


With an uncertain future and more extremes in weather predicted, a Passivhaus stays a comfortable temperature inside all year round, with little (if any) need for heating and cooling. Perfect for the Ballarat and surrounding climate.

The voluntary international standard requires high levels of insulation and air-tightness to ensure occupant comfort, and mechanical ventilation (with heat-recover) for continuous fresh air to keep the indoor air quality healthy. However, windows can be also opened – it’s not a sealed box.

As the Passivhaus standard is based on building-physics, it is applicable to all buildings in almost every climate – and this doesn’t impact on how the building looks – as it is about how the building-fabric performs.

A Passivhaus building can use up to 90% less energy than a conventional building to heat and cool it, which uses less of earth’s precious resources and is less costly to run over the life of the building.


Talina explains:

“When we look at many of our buildings, we are just seeing the superficial beauty on the outside, or the latest fast-fashion trends. Metaphorically, a sustainable Passivhaus building has a deeper inner beauty and quality that will deliver long-term satisfaction…there is a lot more than meets the eye! Our buildings should provide shelter, comfort, and be a safe and healthy environment to occupy – especially our homes – but most are failing us.”


We are hoping that this award will bring opportunities to help spread awareness about this smart and sensible way of building to a wider audience.

This is a big win for #passivhaus in Australia, #architectsdeclare and for our planet & its inhabitants…it is time for genuine leadership in this space.‬


A heartfelt thank you to everyone involved in creating this project, including our amazing clients, our dedicated team, a talented builder (Craftsmen Quality Builders – Stuart Lee), collaborative consultants (thanks Detail Green – Luc Plowman, Grun Consulting – Clare Parry, KM Landscape Design – Kathleen Murphy, RMG Engineers – Carey Ashby), an inspiring architectural/Passivhaus community, and our supportive family & friends!
(And the talented Tatjana Plitt for the photography 📸)

Winners here: 

More info about Owl Woods Passive House here.

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