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Theresa Passive House is a remarkable architectural transformation of a charming 1914 Craftsman bungalow that seamlessly blends history with modern efficiency to meet Passive House standards for sustainability and wellness. Located in Austin’s historic Clarksville neighborhood, this remodel balances preservation and modernization, honoring the home’s rich character while thoughtfully weaving contemporary elements and cutting-edge sustainable design throughout.
The project’s success lies in its commitment to rigorous targets in energy efficiency, indoor air quality, thermal comfort, embodied carbon, and responsible materials sourcing set by Passive House Institute U.S. (Phius). Honoring Passive House principles provides the home with exceptional energy performance, using approximately 75% less energy than typical new homes. Furthermore, Theresa Passive House acts as its own energy hub utilizing a system that stores cool energy to reduce reliance on the grid. During power outages, the house generates its own electricity through a combination of photovoltaic panels and battery backup, providing self-sufficiency and ensuring peace of mind, even during extreme and unpredictable weather events.
Designed in collaboration with Jefferson Randolph Architects, Theresa Passive House represents a resilient, healthy, and inspiring home for an active family. The project achieved Passive House certification and became a pilot project for the PHIUS 2018+ Source Zero standard. As the only PHIUS-certified, source-zero project in the South—meaning the building produces more energy than it consumes—this architectural masterpiece sets a new standard for energy efficiency in the South and serves as a future model for mindful and persistent climate action in residential construction.
Awards & Recognition
- 2022 | Austin Home Magazine Readers Choice Home of the Year
- 2022 | Texas Architect’s Design Award
- 2022 | Preservation Austin’s Award for Sustainability
- 2022 | AIA Austin Design Award of Merit
- 2022 | U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Housing Innovation Awards Winner
- 2022 | PHIUS’ Passive Project of the Year – Retrofit
- 2022 | Austin Green Awards
- This Passive House certified home is a pilot project for the PHIUS 2018+ Source Zero standard and one of the first Passive House projects located in a hot, humid climate.
- Received the highest rating by Austin Energy Green Building to date, consuming 75% less energy than a typical new home.
- Researchers at the University of Texas are now studying the home to further measure its energy performance, indoor air quality, passive survivability, and occupant patterns to inform future Passive House builds.