Coventry Eco Project

Coventry ECO House - Winner of Cost & Build-ability category, UK Passivhaus Trust Awards, 2014
Made In The UK
John Rous Avenue, Coventry
Orbit Housing Association
2 x three bedroom homes
m2 per unit
Delivery Method
Floor U value
0.09 W/m²k
U Value - Walls and Roof
0.11 W/m²k
Air Tightness
0.6 m³/hm²@50pa

George Obeng-Manu, Head of Construction for Orbit Homes

“The FORCE project in Coventry is an innovative and exciting project and as the client we want to ensure the highest possible energy efficiency standard using the Passivhaus principles. We are confident that the Beattie Passive Build System is the right one for the project and will enable us to set a precedent for how Passivhaus technologies are used within Orbit and the sector as a whole.”

Project Outline:

Economic conditions and a dramatic slowdown in the construction industry have led to a shortage of good-quality, energy-efficient social housing in recent years.

Much of the existing social housing stock suffers from minimal or no insulation, and combined with spiralling energy costs, hefty fuel bills often impact hardest on people who can least afford it.

Orbit FORCE Project Brief

To pursue the project vision for Coventry and Warwickshire by comprehensively assessing the effects of building to the UK Code Level 6 and German Passivhaus standards for sustainable construction, by designing and constructing a pair of detached houses, each built to one of the standards. [Force – Forum for Construction Excellence for Coventry and Warwickshire]

Build Proposal: Beattie Passive to design and build two 3 bedroom detached homes to meet the needs of the local community. Using traditional and readily available construction materials Beattie Passive’s innovative and unique construction method will deliver one Passive House and one Code 6 which will also be a Passive house *. This is achieved by creating a super-insulated and continuous void around the floor, walls and roof offering numerous environmental and cost savings.


Each house will be certified to Passivhaus standard and one will reach Code 6 being Zero Carbon to the Government’s Code of Sustainable Homes.

On completion, each house was independently tested for air tightness and sound migration, and thermally imaged. Upon reaching the required Passivhaus standard, each house was certified by the Encraft and BRE.

Youth Employment

Given the underlying simplicity of the Beattie Passive Build System, our designs can be transformed into high performance, low-cost homes using semi-skilled labour.

Four 17 year old, second year carpentry students at Coventry City College who attend college for two days a week manufactured the Beattie Passive House frames.

They completed two 86m2 frames in just 5 days and finished the assembly of a 5.6 metre ladder rib section in an impressive 2 minutes 48 seconds.

The students then progressed onto site to erect the frames and learned the Beattie Passive build system to help deliver Orbit Passive houses.

The Beattie Passive System appears to offer the chance to construct extremely energy efficient dwellings to Passivhaus standard and above at an affordable cost, and my involvement in the demonstration project at John Rous Avenue in Coventry with Orbit Group and FORCE will enable me to learn and understand how this can be done and eventually enlighten other affordable housing groups. Anyone who can break the mould and deliver homes which are both cheap to run and construct deserves our undivided attention.
Alan Leary
Director | Walker Cotter | Tetra Group