Passivhaus Affiliate

Passivhaus ambitions progress in the city of York

The City of York Council and PHT member Mikhail Riches pave the way in delivering a city-wide Passivhaus housing programme, drawing inspiration from the award-winning Goldsmith Street social housing scheme.

City of York Passivhaus Housing Scheme


The intelligent masterplan of Goldsmith Street incorporates highly insulated homes at certified Passivhaus standard, offering excellent levels of energy performance and internal comfort for residents. Not only this, but the scheme demonstrates how energy-efficient affordable-housing can be achieved on a large scale; all objectives City of York Council endeavour to achieve.

With their pledge to meet net-zero carbon targets by 2030, the City of York Council aims to deliver 600 Passivhaus certified homes across eight sites. They have apppointed PHT Patron WARM as the key Passivhaus consultant.


City of York Passivhaus Housing Scheme


Current developments underway

Three sites are currently in the design and planning stages in the city of York:

City of York Passivhaus Housing Scheme


  • 34 Units, Duncombe Barracks: Planning submitted, work to start December 2021, predicted completion Summer 2023.

  • 85 Units, Burnholme College: Planning submitted, work to start December 2021, predicted completion Summer 2023.

  • 100-110 Units, Ordnance Lane: Planning submitted October 2020, work start and completion date to be confirmed.

The development will include a combination of new market sale, social rent, and low cost-ownership options.


City of York Passivhaus Housing Scheme


The City of York Council appointed Mikhail Riches Architects to replicate the high-quality design & Passivhaus performance at scale. Ensuring quality and consistency across all units, over multiple design phases is a key challenge.

All the homes will be orientated to maximise solar gains and provide good levels of natural light. The scheme includes solar PV panels and air-source heat pumps. Timber frame construction with brick and roughcast render will be utilised with complimentary timber cladding. Embodied carbon analysis will be conducted.


City of York Passivhaus Housing Scheme


The community-driven programme outlines objectives including encouraging interaction between residents, reducing carbon footprints of individuals and the community, and creating affordable healthy homes.

The City of York Council has immense potential to create a positive shift in the UK housing stock in the coming years by implementing Passivhaus on a city-wide scale. With the crucial leadup to 2030, we look forward to seeing how the scheme comes to life.


City of York Passivhaus Housing Scheme

Key team

Client/ Developer: City of York Council

Architect: Mikhail Riches

Passivhaus Consultants: WARM

Mechanical Services Engineering: LEDA

Landscape Design: URBED

All images, unless otherwise stated © Mikhail Riches

Architect’s Journal: Mikhail Riches reveals York plan for Uk’s largest Passivhaus programme – 7th October 2020

The Guardian: ‘This is the Everest of zero carbon’- inside York’s green home revolution – 4th October 2020

27th January 2021

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