The suburban Innova block of flats is being renovated into a passive house

Under the Innova passive renovation project, the aim is to renovate a suburban block of flats from the 1970s and to study the potential for energy renovation. The goal was to discover a replicable renovation model for blocks of flats, particularly those built in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. Such buildings constitute the majority of Finnish building stock and are highly wasteful in their energy consumption. This made the project interesting to ARA.

The project was launched in 2010, with a competition seeking housing companies or rental buildings that would be suitable for major energy renovation. A block of flats with an exposed-aggregate finish, owned by the rental housing company of the City of Riihimäki, Riihimäen kotikulma, and built in 1975, was chosen.

Special feature: TES energy facade

As a special feature of the project, the decision was taken to test the TES energy facade prefabricated facade solution, developed in Central Europe and little known in Finland. TES is an abbreviation for "Timber-based Element System", and the system consists of facade elements with timber frames, which can be fixed on top of a building's existing outer shell. The elements were fabricated in dry indoor conditions at the Teeri-Kolmio Oy factory and delivered to the construction site complete with insulation, glazing and a finishing coat. They could then be very quickly installed at the construction site.

Before the installation of the new elements, the surface layer of the old sandwich elements had to be dismantled and the old insulation removed. In addition to effective moisture risk management during the construction stage, the method's benefits include an extremely short lead time at the construction site.

To ensure the dimensional accuracy of the elements, the existing structure was laser-scanned and an accurate, three-dimensional model was created of the building. This method allowed the reliable charting of dimensional errors resulting from inaccuracies in the original element technology, and the architect was able to create finished dimensional images within the data model for element fabrication.

Paving the way for energyefficient renovations

The end result was an extremely energy-efficient renovation of a residential block of flats, meeting the criteria of a passive house and paving the way for renovating Finland's stock of buildings to the level of energy-efficiency specified in national targets. Indoor air quality also markedly improved, due to the mechanisation of ventilation and new ventilation channels integrated into the exterior wall elements.

The project received development funds, an interest subsidy loan and energy subsidies from ARA.

Innova-passiivitalo, Innova-passiivitalo

Published 2013-08-09 at 13:06, updated 2013-08-28 at 9:40