Yearly Archive: 2017



Germany, its forests and one architect’s vision of green housing

Wolfgang Frey taps into tradition by using his own woodland to build low-energy homes

When high-tech architect Wolfgang Frey is looking for innovation he goes back to his roots, deep in the hills of the Black Forest, in south-west Germany. Walking around the woods that his family have owned for centuries, the nimble 57-year-old treads lightly through the undergrowth and stops in a clearing where ancient beech stumps have been allowed to rot so that their remains seep into the ground to fertilise the saplings of the future.

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Unique Homes Magazine: Principles for the Planet

by Samantha Myers

Architect Wolfgang Frey’s lifelong passion for the environment prompted him to become a worldwide leader in sustainable designs. From building ecological living communities and battery-powered buildings, to offsetting every bit of his own carbon footprint — German Architect Wolfgang Frey is both a pioneer of the sus- tainability movement and at the forefront of its future.

Brought up in a family of carpenters from Germany’s Black Forest, Frey had a humbled perspective of architecture even before he began his career. “Growing up with my father, who was a carpenter as well as an architect, I realized that architecture is only a part of the whole process,” says Frey […]

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PASSIVHAUS 101: Sustainable Architecture from the Inside Out

This article discusses the Passive House (PH) as an example for sustainable architecture. It defines what a PH house is as well as how it uses shading, ventilation, and solar power efficiently. Originating from the efforts of German physicist Wolfgang Feist, the word Passivhaus, or Passive House, is a term that de- fines a building’s energy use for heating. For the purposes of this discussion, a PH is one that does not use over 15 kWh/m2/yr.

Let’s look at an example. In the wintertime, let’s say it is –15° C with a flow of about 15 watts per hour per square meter of heat energy escaping the building. At –2° C, around 7.5 watts per hour of energy loss would be expected. At the same time, the building would have energy inputs— for instance, through heating, cooking, charging stations for computers, and, not to be forgotten, the heat that human bodies emites […]

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Casa Naturale: UN QUARTIERE A IMPATTO ZERO

Il cantiere procede, a passo spedito. Ma la rivoluzione è già compiuta: presto, la Germania potrà vantarsi di essere il Paese con il più grande complesso edilizio abitativo passivo. O, come la chiamano qui, di «Passivhaus». Un quartiere interamente pensato e realizzato per inseguire l’ideale dell’efficienza energetica, all’avanguardia su scala mondiale. Il progetto, realizzato dallo studio Frey Architekten, si trova all’interno dell’Heidelberg Village, a Bahnstadt: proprio nella città che rappresenta una delle più affascinanti testimonianze del romanticismo tedesco, sulle sponde del fiume Necker.

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En Alemania proyectan una torre inteligente capaz de abastecer de energía renovable a todo un vecindario

Puede que la idea de construir un edificio inteligente y energéticamente autosuficiente no sea nueva, pero si lo que se pretende es que esa construcción abastezca con energía limpia a todo un barrio, la cosa cambia. Es a lo que aspira la “Smart Green Tower”, una apuesta pionera de construcción sostenible que está camino de convertirse en realidad en Friburgo, Alemania.

Con el apoyo de Siemens y del Instituto Fraunhofer ISE para los Sistemas de Energía Solar, el arquitecto Wolfgang Frey ha sido el encargado de diseñar esta torre que, además de alojar 70 viviendas y oficinas, se convertirá en una auténtica estación para generar y almacenar energía limpia hasta el punto de que, no solo se abastecerá a sí misma, sino que tendrá capacidad para cubrir las necesidades energéticas de otros edificios de la zona.

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Earth Day 2017

Education is the foundation for progress. We need to build a global citizenry fluent in the concepts of climate change and aware of its unprecedented threat to our planet. We need to empower everyone with the knowledge to inspire action in defense of environmental protection. Environmental and climate literacy is the engine not only for creating green voters and advancing environmental and climate laws and policies but also for accelerating green technologies and jobs.

This Earth Day, gather with your community for an Environmental & Climate Literacy Teach-In or another project focused on education. We are launching Earth Day and Teach-In toolkits that will lay out the steps for holding a successful event. Register your event with us and we will support you with promotion and advice.

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Visualizing The Electric Grid In Real Time, And Other World Changing Ideas In Energy

Learn about the winner of the energy category of Fast Company’s 2017 World Changing Ideas Awards–and the other innovative finalists.

Smart Green Tower by Frey Architekten
Conceived by a German architecture firm, the Smart Green Tower generates and stores all its own electricity. On the outside is a glass photovoltaic facade. Inside is a massive battery. The building is due to be constructed in Freiburg im Breisgau, in south-west Germany, in 2017. It could become part of a local mini-grid, says the developer, playing a supply-and-demand balancing role.

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“We take time to give back to the people.”

Sustainable Architect and Urban Planner Wolfgang Frey Takes an Unconventional Approach to Building with People and their Individual Needs in Mind.

„We take time to give back to the people.“ Wolfgang Frey is convinced, as were his great-grandfathers, that a person’s responsibility for buildings and the people living in them lasts a lifetime and beyond. Time, like energy and water, is a resource that shouldn’t be wasted.

Heidelberg, April 10, 2017 – The work for Heidelberg Village’s extended shell is completed. This delivers a solid basis for builders Frey Gruppe and Software AG to complete the apartments’ interior construction together with the construction workers and residents.

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