15-0129 v2.1/Zero Energy House/Open Day for Residential Project


There have been several open days for the house, however they have not been publicized to the community at large as such but have been open to industry groups and individual members of the public. The house is a home and therefore tours for the public have been kept small and personal and on request or offered by the owners. Tours for the industry or student groups have been larger and publicised within those groups. Is the following an acceptable alternative to complying with the open day:

1. Open days for groups of architects, members of Auckland Council and the local Albert-Eden board, Auckland Permaculture Workshop as part of one of their day courses, a group of Natural Step course attendees, product suppliers for the project and their choice of attendees, university groups (including Unitec) and a group of local brewers and their friends. Individuals and smaller public groups have been given a tour of the house after contacting the owners through the website and requesting one, hearing about the house through friends or passing by the house.

2. A site sign displayed during construction explaining what was being built and defining net zero energy. At the weekends locals would stop to read the sign and the owners would go outside to greet them, answer questions and offer them a tour where safety would allow.

3. Videos showing the house (inside and out) with narratives on the design and performance and images of the house on the website, giving the public a virtual tour of the house. The performance videos include narratives from the owners on what the house is like to live in.

4. Presentations on the design and performance of the house to Architects, Engineers, NZIA (New Zealand Institute of Architects), Unitec students, Auckland University students, the NZGBC’s Sustainable Housing Summit and the Sustainable City showcase (general public).

5. Displaying information on the house at the Sustainable City Showcase 2012 and 2013 which is a free event for the general public. In 2012 the house was still in the final stages of construction during the time of the showcase so our display was centred on what net zero energy means and how the house has been designed to achieve this. The display included posters of images and information on the house as well as a mock roof build-up and mock wall build-up purpose built for the showcase. A series of design videos were also displayed on the stand; these videos are available on the website to view. In 2013 the house was complete and occupied so the display at the showcase was focused on the performance. Financial figures (costs and savings) and performance data (predominantly internal temperatures) were displayed on posters and performance videos were displayed. At both showcases the owners and friends of the owners were on hand to talk to the general public and answer any questions and also do presentations on the house in the seminar area of the showcase. Some great feedback was received from the public at both showcases as they started to understand that a comfortable, low operational cost house could be affordable to build and make more financial sense in the long run than a standard house. Some of the people who the owners met at the Sustainable City Showcase followed up with email correspondence requesting advice for their own projects and were given a tour of the house.

6. Live feeds on the website so that the public can view the performance of the house from their own home.

7. Regular newsletters on the project.

8. Regional newspaper articles on the project.

9. National radio interview explaining net zero energy, the aim to achieve Living Building Challenge Net Zero Energy Certification and describing the house and what it is like to live in.

10. Interviews with the owners and film footage of the house on several programs including ‘Keeping It Pure’, 60 Minutes and The Art of the Architect.


The open days outlined in item 1. are sufficient to be considered compliant with that requirement for this Imperative.

Post ID 1991

Still need help? Contact Us Contact Us