Building Magazine


Great Gulf brings the European Active House model to Canada

Great Gulf officially opened the first Active House in Canada in the under-construction housing development of Rolling Meadows in the Town of Thorold, part of Ontario’s Niagara Region.

The Active House concept was initiated in Denmark and evolved from the efforts of a European consortium comprised of various partners from academia, scientists, architects, engineers, and building manufacturers from various European countries. Working in Copenhagen, this Alliance (now based in Brussels) developed a concept that supports the development of energy-efficient buildings which focus exclusively on the well-being and comfort of the residents. This is done by fully integrating “active systems” designed to deliver energy efficiency, low environmental impact and optimized climate control and ventilation.

While the first Canadian Active House, designed by Toronto-based Superkul Inc., was built in Thorold – approximately 120 kilometers south of Toronto — Great Gulf claims the Active House systems can easily be reproduced in a new home of any design or reconstruction.

“The Active House vision defines highly ambitious long-term goals for future homes built by Great Gulf. The purpose of the vision is to create a house that is built on a platform of social responsibility with the well-being of the homeowner as the central focus. With well-balanced light, climate, and air control to add to a resident’s comfort, we strive to continuously improve the homeowner’s experience,” said Tad Putyra, Great Gulf president and COO and an advisory board member of the Active House Alliance in Brussels.

“I am pleased to see how much the VELUX skylights contributed to the experience, quality and comfort of this beautiful home. This was a collaborative project lead by Great Gulf Homes that produced a game-changing home design concept which encompasses the innumerable benefits of natural light, ventilation and aesthetics for its occupants. It moves us towards a cleaner, healthier and happier environment,” said Nels Moxness, President and CEO of Velux Canada Inc.

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