Beach Green Dunes II: Rigorous Passive House Design

Market: Multifamily
Type: Affordable mid-rise
Location: Far Rockaway, NY
Developer/Owner: L+M Development Partners & Triangle Equities
Architect: Curtis + Ginsberg Architects LLP
Building Size : 121,000 ft², 127 units, 8 stories
Pending Certifications : Passive House Institute U.S.
Enterprise Green Communities

Project Background:

Beach Green Dunes II has earned the rigorous PHIUS+ 2015 certification! The 100% income-restricted project in Far Rockaway provides high-quality housing affordable to formerly homeless and low- and moderate-income households. It is immediately adjacent to its sister project Beach Green Dunes I, which was completed in 2017 and also earned PHIUS+ 2015 certification. These unique projects have different envelope strategies and mechanical systems, demonstrating that there are multiple pathways for Passive House compliance.

As part of the post-Hurricane Sandy re-development of Far Rockaway, NY, Beach Green Dunes II integrated a robust resiliency strategy with a central focus on reducing residents’ energy consumption and utility costs. Additionally, many area residents’ homes suffered damage or were lost in the storm, making projects built to withstand severe weather vitally important. Located on an exposed coastal site, the building design includes a flood mitigation strategy to protect occupants, maintain building services, and decrease building damage in the event of a future flooding incident. The ground floor is comprised of tenant parking, a dry flood-proofed commercial space, and a wet flood-proofed residential lobby, including wall flood vents and a durable masonry wall type. Paved surfaces have permeable materials where possible, and a system of rain gardens and bioswales have been planted in the landscaped areas. The residential apartments are exclusively located on the second floor and above to help protect occupants during flooding.


Project Services:

Steven Winter Associates, Inc. provided Green Building Certification and Energy Modeling for the project.

Primary Energy Conservation Measures:

  • The airtight and insulated Passive House envelope will help maintain habitable interior temperatures with or without power, creating an indoor environment where people can shelter in place.
  • To help maintain power, the project includes both a roof mounted photovoltaic canopy and a parking surface photovoltaic trellis.
  • Closed loop geothermal system, which uses the earth’s relatively constant ground temperature to provide heating and cooling for the building.

In addition to meeting the PHIUS+ 2015 Passive House design requirements, Beach Green Dunes II is also designed to be compliant with Enterprise Green Communities, Energy Star V3, U.S. DOE Zero Energy Ready Homes, and U.S. EPA Indoor Air Plus co-requisite programs.

Read more about SWA’s Green Building Certification Services


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