Architetture Sostenibili / Italy
Zero-emissions concept for Regional Environmental Center in Hungary
Architetture Sostenibili b&a Associati
Via Noce 20
The architecture firm, Architetture Sostenibili of Italy, was awarded the contract to design the new conference building of the Regional Environmental Center for Central and Eastern Europe (REC) in Szentendre, Hungary. The reconstruction of the old building was undertaken aiming for zero fossil fuel energy consumption and zero annual CO2 emissions. The architects achieved this goal by combining the latest design techniques and renewable resources. Compared to the former primary energy consumption of 450 kWh/m2 the estimated total primary energy consumption of the new building is 90 kWh/m2. All the electricity needed is provided by a photovoltaic system with a capacity of 29.5 kWp which is partly integrated into the facade. The new building envelope and effective insulation prevent heat loss in the winter and heat gains in the summer. Ground source heat pumps are used to make use of the constant temperature of the earth to provide heating and cooling fitting the seasonal needs. The renewal of the internal airflow is adjusted to the number of people inside the meeting rooms. Intelligent lighting controls optimize the exploitation of natural lighting. The architecture firm has used solar architecture principles while meeting the highest goals for aesthetics, function and comfort. As these principles have been realised in the conference center of an international organization which has high number of visitors, it will attract great public awareness of energy efficiency and renewable energy.