Materiality: Creating a Passivhaus Woodland Community

We are currently working on the delivery of an innovative development of 14 homes in Faversham designed to the Passivhaus standard, which is one of the UK’s first privately funded multi-residential developments of its kind. The principal aim of the project has been to create a high quality, highly sustainable and distinct development as an exemplary model of new housing in rural settings.

One of our key aspirations is to create a new woodland community and therefore a large proportion of the site has been designated to communal landscaped areas, incorporating woodland walks that meander through the site as well as open green spaces that provides a safe place for children to play and for residents to immerse themselves in nature.

To legitimise the idea of a central woodland we felt it was necessary to mitigate the impact that conventional hard-surfaced roads would have on the woodland setting. To achieve this, we have used a cellular permeable ‘paving’ system with grass infill to create ‘green roads’, which enhances the natural character of the site as well as assisting with our sustainable drainage strategy. Hard thresholds such as curb stones have been eliminated so that the green roads, communal landscaping and front gardens blend into one another; slowing down traffic and providing priority to pedestrians.

The project is currently under construction and due to be complete later this year.