News of the 15 March 2018

Centre R&D

It is a blue house, not leaning against the hill, but lurking at the edge of the water in the middle of a forest and in Creuse: this is the astonishing sight that gives to see the first house built by Avenidor which intends to develop several models of passive houses type.

We are in Creuse, near Ahun but far from home. The 24 hectares of land, wooded and dotted with ponds, look more like a paradise for fishermen and hunters than a zone of construction activity.

However, from 2008, the KZB group chose to install its Sustainable Habitat Research and Development Center (not without difficulty: it took 6 years to obtain permission to build on 5000 m2). Several construction methods were tested, including the Avenidor house, completed in December 2017.


The place, chosen for reasons of family ties, is also a good opportunity to check the performance of the construction because the winters are rigorous and summers relatively hot.

"Our goal is to develop sustainable, high-performance and low-impact buildings to meet environmental challenges and anticipate the future regulations related to E + C- experimentation," says Steven Kaszuba, designer, project manager and leader of Avenidor. .

Born in November 2017, the start-up has two employees, but it relies on the experience of a subsidiary of the group, SETIM, building company all state bodies since 1980 (20 people).


After 2 years of work, including 9 months of building work, this extraordinary project leads to the first certified Passive Premium and 100% autonomous house. At the end of a difficult construction site: access to the site is complicated, with 800 m of impracticable road by construction equipment.

The basement is full of granite blocks, which make the earthwork laborious and bad weather do not facilitate the mounting of the envelope! The building of 90 m2 on the ground totals 252 m2, including a heated basement total.

With its half-timbered, she copies a typical house of old Colmar. "The idea is that we can give a very classic style to a construction made with materials and advanced equipment," says Steven Kaszuba. "For the masonry part, the choice was quickly focused on Ytong cellular concrete. Highly efficient and durable over time, this solution also had the lowest gray energy output. "

 Elévation blocs Ytong

 Ytong Thermo solid blocks with a thickness of 36.5 cm and a density of 350 kg / m3 are bonded with a thin joint.


Resistance, insulation, ... the qualities of the various cellular concretes respond perfectly to a "virtuous" masonry construction method. Easy to use, in "mono-wall" or with a reported insulation, the material is healthy (no VOC emitted) and breathable (lets pass water vapor). It still represents only 5% of new residential construction in France.

Ytong Thermo solid blocks with a thickness of 36.5 cm and a density of 350 kg / m3 are bonded with a thin joint. Their precise cutting allows for very precise joinery frames, facilitating a tight junction with the frames.

They contribute to the waterproofness of the envelope, which reaches an average of 0.18 per hour at the blower door test: a record impermeability (the required minimum is 0.6 / h).


The walls also received a waterproofing membrane and a 20 cm thick EWI of white EPS with double bonding and mechanical fixing. Then, 15 mm of plaster and false half-timbered patina (25 mm of reconstituted stone) complete the set, which displays an R of 10 (the interior is lined by partitions 18 mm on metal frame).

The rest of the insulation is the same: the roof is insulated with 600 mm cellulose wadding blown in the attic (R = 12). In the basement, the slab is composed of 240 mm of XPS under the slab.

The floor of the ground floor, reinforced concrete on wooden slabs, is insulated with Foamglas cellular glass panels to avoid thermal bridges. All joinery is in triple glazing, with a glass Securit (no occultation of glass surfaces).

 Maison Avenidor

 The application of 15 mm plaster and faux half-timbered patina (25 mm reconstituted stone) complete the set, which displays an R of 10

EquipPeD as a Rolls

Designed to consume less than 6 kWh / m2 / year, the house has no heating or air conditioning system. A Daikin air-water dual service heat pump provides the DHW, supplies 3 towel warmers and the dry battery of the dual stream VMC, a Maico with very high efficiency and very low energy consumption (300 m3 of air flow) , for an air exchange rate of 0.5 vol / h).

The three bedrooms upstairs each have a bathroom and toilet. A recuperator of energy located under each shower makes it possible to value 93% of the calories of the evacuated water: the cold water feeding the shower passes in a spiral of copper wrapped around the evacuation.

It is thus preheated (10 to 28 ° C), which greatly limits the need for hot water to reach the ideal shower temperature. These heat exchangers are accessible by hatches made in the false acoustic ceiling of the single room of the ground floor.

Laboratory, the house is equipped with 23 temperature, CO2, hygrometry sensors, CO2, installed in various key points (openings, equipment). Via the house modem, they will transmit data that will be processed by the SETIM design office for performance monitoring.

 PAC Avenidor

 View of the sensors on the heat pump in the basement

autonomY, a certain cost

The cost of the autonomy of the house is estimated between 50 and 70 000 €. The aim here is not to make the photovoltaic system (including batteries), the water supply and wastewater treatment systems profitable, but to demonstrate the feasibility.

The 19 kW photovoltaic power station extends over a new dam. The 60 LG sensors of 1.6 m2 each are bifacial: the underside uses the reflection of the sun on the floor painted white. The upper part also exploits the reflection of the sun on the water, with a significant efficiency gain. The production, stored in 8 lithium-ion batteries ensures 2 days of autonomy to the entire site: the house, but also the caretaker's cottage and various outdoor equipment.

For water supply, a borehole can collect water from the groundwater a few tens of meters from the house. Filtered for the first time before being stored in a buried tank, the water is filtered a second time and potabilized with a UV system before distribution. Finally, a treatment mini-station treats wastewater.

 Champs panneaux PV

The photovoltaic power station also exploits the reflection of the sun on the water


The house achieves the highest level of certification, "Premium", of the energy performance label for buildings created by the German Passivhaus Institute. It defines three levels of requirements. The minimum criteria are those of the Passive Classic level:

  • A heating requirement of less than 15 kWh of useful energy per m² of energy reference area per year
  • A total consumption of primary energy (all uses, domestic appliances included) of less than 120 kWh per m² of energy reference area per year, in non-renewable sources
  • An air permeability of the envelope measured under 50 Pascals of pressure difference less than or equal to 0.6 per hour. The internal overheating frequency (> 25 ° C) must be less than 10% of the hours of the year.

 Labels Passif


 Labels of La Maison Passive - France

Avenidor, ALREADY 40 QUANTITATIVE QUOTES FOR the budding builder

This first prototype is a good compromise between high performance and acceptable cost. Just two months after its completion, Avenidor received about forty requests for quotes for passive house projects, autonomous or not. "A catalog is being developed, to propose 4 or 5 models of typical houses, so as to limit the number of studies carried out by the SETIM design office", says Steven Kaszuba, which thus constitutes a basis for discussion to develop with his future clients the custom-made house of their dreams.

The goal is to offer custom-made Passivhaus labeled houses around 2000-2500 € / m2 all taxes included. The final price will of course vary according to the chosen performances (thickness of the walls, equipment, production or not of energy, use of non-renewable energy, ...).

Part of the manufacturing will be subcontracted to selected local building companies in the network of its partners (manufacturers of cellular concrete, equipment, etc.). It is up to Avenidor to plan the site, to check the key points, "for example, we will take care of the airtightness" and to have the house labeled.

The company has already planned to start manufacturing another prototype, wood frame and straw this time, to demonstrate the value of a 100% autonomous and biosourced construction. A lot of work in prospect for Avenidor, whose name, word from Creuse for the future, was not chosen at random!

 Source : / Emmanuelle Jeanson