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South Vancouver rental building to be Canada’s largest multi-unit Passive House

Tenants of the six-storey building at Fraser and 57th will benefit from reduced heating and cooling costs and clean air
passive house
Despite its high energy-efficiency construction standards, Spire Landing rental homes will be priced below market rates, says the developer. | Submitted

A new six-storey rental building at Fraser and 57th is set to be the largest multi-family building constructed to Passive House energy-efficiency standards, once it is completed in spring this year.

That’s good news for the future tenants of the building, named Spire Landing, as they should benefit from dramatically reduced heating and cooling bills, as well as mold- and pollen-free air quality.

Further good news, according to Spire Development, is that even though construction costs are high because of the energy standards, the 95 units will be offered at “below market rental rates.” That’s because the building is being developed under the City of Vancouver’s subsidized Rental 100 program.

Passive House construction, which originated in Europe but is gaining traction – mostly in single-family homes – in Canada, has rigorous design guidelines for energy efficiency. These include such features as heat-recovery ventilation systems, which create cleaner air quality than existing buildings and other new construction, as well as solar shading, draft-free doors, triple-glazed windows and thick walls that keep the building cool in summer and warm in winter.

Pete Rackow, co-founder of Delta-based developer Spire Development, said, “The cost of Passive House construction is more expensive than constructing a traditional building; however, the final product is much superior in terms of air quality, noise reduction, and carbon footprint. With the City’s support, we now have the perfect opportunity to revolutionize the rental experience for Vancouverites, especially given our current housing crunch.”

Designed by Cornerstone Architecture, Spire Landing will also offer its tenants a number of common amenities, including a rooftop garden, and lounge with terrace, a music studio, car-charging stations and bike storage and workshop. The building will also have great views of the North Shore Mountains to the north and the Fraser Valley to the south.