THE BAPTISIA: COMFORTABLE. ENERGY EFFICIENT. SUSTAINABLE.
From the ground up, The Baptisia Condominium residences were designed to be ultra-comfortable, healthy, quiet, with low bills. Combining advanced design practices and superior building systems, these homes are so air tight and efficient that by adding solar panels they have the potential to annually produce as much energy as they consume. The Baptisia also has sophisticated ventilation and air circulation systems, low emitting material selections for healthier air, plus extensive stormwater management and native plant landscape minimizes its impact on the environment. The result is the rare opportunity to live with a net zero energy bill, healthier indoor air quality and a carbon-free home.
GREEN CERTIFICATIONS SOUGHT FOR THE BAPTISIA:
Green buildings have design strategies and construction specifications that are far beyond the required building code for increased energy efficiency, water efficiency, air quality and resiliency. Third party certification ensures these design strategies and construction practices have been rigorously plan reviewed, on-site verified and most importantly, tested for performance. Third party certifications provide a rigorous quality assurance process that ensures a higher quality home.
Building scientists got together and developed a building certification that focuses intensively on providing comfort for occupants in support of extreme energy efficiency. The result is the Passive House certification through the Passive House Institute of the US (PHIUS). A home built to the Passive House standard has a comfortable, quiet interior environment with steady temperatures and no drafts. The property is extremely energy efficient and uses up to 90% less energy for heating and cooling compared to average existing building stock. It has healthier indoor air quality free of mold and dangerous levels of typical indoor air contaminants. Reduced energy use translates into lower bills and protection from future energy shocks. It is resilient and designed to make Net Zero Energy readily achievable with the addition of solar panels, indefinitely maintaining habitable interior temperatures in freezing weather without power. This allows people to shelter-in-place and by reducing power demand, allows power distribution systems to be better managed. A passive house is part of the solution of global climate change.
ZERO ENERGY READY HOME (ZERH)
Net zero energy homes are highly energy efficient homes specifically designed and built to produce as much energy as they consume on an annual basis through the addition renewable resource such as solar panels. The Department of Energy Zero Energy Ready Homes (ZERH) are designed to become net zero energy homes once solar panels are added. These homes are verified by a qualified third-party and are at least 40%-50% more energy efficient than a typical new home.
ENERGY STAR (ESTAR)
The Department of Energy certification program. Energy Star homes are verified by a qualified third-party and are at least 15% more energy efficient than a typical new home.
INDOOR AIRPLUS (IAP)
Indoor air quality is affected by moisture, mold, pet dander and particulates from dust, smoke, smog all of which can trigger asthma. Also, toxic chemicals called volatile organic compounds (VOC's) such as formaldehyde can cause other reactions. Homes built to earn the Department of Energy's Indoor airPLUS label include specific equipment, filtration and selection of finish materials to reduce contaminants that can lead to poor indoor air quality, including mold, moisture, radon, carbon monoxide, toxic chemicals and more. While healthy air quality is important for everyone, people with chemical sensitivities and allergies particularly benefit from a home with the Indoor air PLUS certification.
GETTING TO NET ZERO ENERGY READY
AIR TIGHT ENVELOPE
The building envelope is also designed to have an air tight layer that connects all surfaces of the envelope blocking any air from leaking in or out of the building. The picture shows the special sheathing board (the yellow) where liquid applied flashing (the red) air seals the connection between boards. The liquid applied “flashing” is also connected to the windows and doors eliminating all gaps and cracks. Designing to aggressive air tightness drastically reduces the amount of energy needed to heat and cool a building. It also eliminates drafty windows and cold spots. Enjoy this home in comfort.
CUSTOM INSULATED WINDOWS AND DOORS
The windows are insulated, fully custom, European style, tilt-turn, windows and doors by Wasco. Triple pane glass with multiple coatings and Argon fill and thoroughly insulated frames bring the R value of these windows to ~9. This is three times the insulation value of the typical R3 window found in most new construction. The coatings also allow the suns rays to heat the home in the winter months and block the strong summer sun. These casement windows are designed by be even more air tight with double and triple gaskets. No more drafty windows!
HIGH EFFICIENCY HEATING AND COOLING
The building’s envelope can reduce the amount of energy to heat/cool the home by up to 90% when compared to average existing home. The installed HVAC equipment is 50% more efficient than a builder grade system. It is easy to maintain equipment familiar to all HVAC servicers. The system is placed in a central location to minimize bends and the duct work is meticulously sealed. This ensures delivery of conditioned air to living spaces, not inside walls. WIFI Enabled Programmable Thermostats for Smart phone control included.
The Baptisia has a custom designed high performance building "envelope" beginning with roughly twice the amount of insulation required by code on all six sides of the building. The insulation is specifically designed to be continuous and connected to eliminate any direct connection of inside to the outside. This eliminates “thermal bridging” that causes comfort issues in a home such as cold walls in winter and hot spots in summer. Super insulation creates an even temperature comfortable interior experience. The insulation also acts as a sound deadener meaning your home will be very quiet.
ALL LED LIGHTS AND ENERGY STAR APPLIANCES
To further reduce energy use, The Baptisia features all Energy Star appliances including the refrigerator, dishwasher, clothes washer, clothes dryer and the ceiling fans. The appliances are high quality, easy to use and work as you’d expect, all while utilizing less energy and natural resources.
Also, throughout the project, 100% of the lighting is supplied by LED. These custom light fixtures are bright, stylish and well constructed - all while consuming less energy and giving off less heat.
CUSTOM HOT WATER SYSTEM
Because of the high performance envelope, the largest energy user in a high performance home becomes hot water heating and distribution. While The Baptisia has off the shelf high efficiency electric tanks, it has a custom designed hot water recirculation loop. The loop has a pump that only brings hot water to a tap when needed. It conserves water by recirculating non-hot water back to the tank, not down the drain. Owners enjoy instant hot water while knowing they are also saving energy!
HEALTHIER INDOOR AIR QUALITY
CONTINUOUS FRESH AIR SUPPLY
Each has a stand alone ventilation system that provides continuous fresh air to the living spaces of a home while simultaneously exhausting air from the locations where moisture and particulates are created; the kitchens and baths. The ventilation air passes through special equipment called an Energy Recovery Ventilator (ERV). An ERV pre-heats or pre-cools the incoming air by transferring heat and moisture from the outgoing to the incoming air. This heat and moisture transfer allows continuous fresh air with low energy loss.
Construction finishes are notorious for off gassing irritating toxic fumes from volatile organic compounds (VOC’s) long after the construction is complete. To avoid these pollutants completely, low or zero VOC finishes and materials have been used to provide healthier air quality. These include the kitchen cabinets and solid core interior doors which are CARB 2 Compliant (ultra low formaldehyde). All paints, primers, sealers, wood stains and finishes are zero VOC.
CUSTOM RANGE EXHAUST DESIGN
In most new construction projects, a range is exhausted by recirculating poorly filtered air filled with cooking particulates inside the home. In contrast, the Baptisia’s ranges are vented directly to the exterior. This removes a major source of particulates and unwanted humidity: cooking. However, because the building envelope is so air tight, a special duct provides fresh air to the kitchen and also keeps the pressure in the home even when the range fan is engaged. When the fan is turned off, the fresh air vent is closed..
EXTENSIVE, CONTINUOUS DUAL AIR FILTRATION
The Baptisia’s heating and cooling equipment provides extensive and continuous filtration through their 4” pleated MERV 12 filters. Typical HVAC system filters are 1” thick, MERV 5-7. These remove a low percentage of only the largest particulates. A MERV 12 filter is approaching the performance of a HEPA filter and removes up to 90% of small particulates including pet dander, bacteria, mold, dust, smoke and smog. In addition, the ERV also has filters providing MERV 8 filtration for all incoming fresh air.
OTHER UNIQUE SUSTAINABLE FEATURES
SOLAR READY DESIGN AND CAR CHARGING
The Baptisia has conduit pre-installed and breakers set aside in anticipation of addition of a solar photovoltaic systems over the parking area and on the penthouse roof. If you have an electric car or have one on order, The Baptisia has you covered. Additionally, each of the parking spaces in the rear has a 30A 240V circuit ready hardwired and ready for a Level 2 car charger. Just connect the charger of your choice, plug in and power up quickly and efficiently.
DESIGNED FOR LOW WATER CONSUMPTION
Water conservation is important, but homeowners are also looking for fixtures and appliances that work as you demand. At the Baptisia, water is conserved by using low flow fixtures including EPA WaterSense Certified low flow shower heads, low flow bath vanity faucets, and low flow toilets. They still provide the comfort and functionality you expect. The appliances that utilize water are also an important component of water conservation. The washing machines and dishwashers are all Energy Star appliances.
Through comprehensive site design and engineering, 100% of the stormwater that falls on site is captured and returned to the earth instead of going to DC’s overburdened storm sewer system. All roof and balcony stormwater is routed to an infiltration pit located underneath the parking area. This pit allows the water to slowly infiltrate into the earth. Additional infiltration is designed in under the porous pavers on the parking and under the pavers in patios and front area wells.
NATIVE PLANT LANDSCAPE
Native planting design provides food and shelter for our native bees, birds and other pollinators to thrive. These tough as nails, drought tolerant perennials and shrubs are uniquely adapted to grow in our environment. These easy care low maintenance plants will flourish in the urban environment. Plantings include Baptisia australis, commonly known as blue wild indigo or blue false indigo, is a flowering plant in the family Fabaceae (legumes). It is native to much of central and eastern North America.