- ABOUT MassCEC
The Passive House Design Challenge has awarded 8 projects for a total of 540 housing units. It is currently closed to additional applicants.
MassCEC seeks to demonstrate that multi-family affordable housing that meets Passive House standards can be built at a low- to no-cost premium in Massachusetts. The Passive House Design Challenge made awards of up to $4,000 per unit for 8 new construction affordable housing developments that are seeking Massachusetts Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC). The goal of the program is to demonstrate that new construction can be built with a less than 3% cost premium.
Passive House Design Challenge Awardees
$1.7M was awarded through the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center’s Passive House Design Challenge program, part of the Baker-Polito Administration’s $15 million Affordable Access for Clean and Efficient Energy (AACEE) initiative. The grants, awarded to 8 affordable housing developments in Cambridge, Gloucester, Hanson, Northampton, Holbrook and Boston totaling 540 high-efficiency units, provide energy savings and improved indoor air quality for low-income households.
|Owner and Project||Location||# Units||Award||Incremental Cost|
Beacon Communities Old Colony Phase Three C - South Boston
|Community Builders North Commons||Northampton||
*Depot Village has been Passive House pre-certified, but will not make Passive House certification
|Homeowner’s Rehab Inc.’s Finch Cambrige||Cambridge||
|$147,000||1.4% (Itemized Cost)|
|NeighborWorks Southern Mass’s Holbrook Center Senior Housing||Holbrook||
|NorthShore Community Development Corporation’s Harbor Village||Gloucester||
|Preservation for Affordable Housing Mattapan Station||Mattapan||
|Preservation of Affordable Housing The Kenzi at Bartlett Station||Roxbury||
Passive House Incentives from MassSave®
Building on the momentum of MassCEC’s program, MassSave® has announced an incentive program for new construction multi-family projects of four stories and above to consider and certify building to Passive House standards. This program is both for market rate and affordable multi-family new construction. Buildings are eligible for:
- 100% of Passive House feasibility study up to $5,000
- 75% up to $20,000 for Passive House Energy Modelling
- $3,000 per unit if the building gets Passive House certification
To apply, email details of your proposed building to email@example.com.
About Passive House
Passive House is a green building certification that ensures extremely high levels of energy efficiency and the provision of fresh air for ventilation. Multi-family buildings built to the Passive House standard generally use 40% less total energy than energy stretch code-compliant buildings. The annual energy use of 8-12 Passive House multi-family apartments is roughly equivalent to the average existing single-family suburban home in Massachusetts.
Passive House buildings achieve:
- Drastically lower energy use and operational cost savings
- Healthy fresh air quality from ventilation systems
- Consistent and comfortable room temperatures without air drafts
- Increased natural lighting and quieter acoustic conditions
- A more resilient and comfortable building
- Lower energy demand, which can be easily provided by solar power, creating a pathway to a net-zero or net-positive building