Revolutionary Waiheke building takes energy efficiency to new levels

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A new development has officially opened on Waiheke Island that is believed to be New Zealand’s most sustainable mixed-use building.
Developed by leading architectural designer Bryce Ardern of Lite-House, in partnership with Right House, New Zealand’s one-stop shop for creating an energy-efficient home, the building is a true exhibit of best practices in design, sustainability and modern technology.

Combining office space and apartment living, Lite-House features Australasia’s first vertical axis wind turbine combined with an array of photovoltaic panels inverted through battery storage that work to put power back into the grid.

Right House chief executive Hamish Sisson says the Lite-House project is a great example of what you can do with leading energy-efficient solutions and technologies.
“Installing the vertical axis wind turbine was definitely a highlight for Right House as this type of wind technology has not yet been used in Australasia. It is just one of the features of this cutting-edge, mixed-use building,” he says.

Lite-House design director Bryce Ardern says he is excited that the public now can see for themselves that a building can encompass leading architectural design, while still being extremely energy efficient.
“The development is an example of how energy-efficient construction can be taken to a new level. We have fused the best design practices, green-rated materials and the latest technologies — a reflection of our aspiration to build a development that is aesthetically pleasing and eco-friendly.

“We believe the industry and home owners should be demanding sustainable buildings. The technologies are available today to build homes and commercial properties which leave a lighter footprint on the earth and make best use of renewable energy resources,” Mr Ardern says. 

Right House worked with the Lite-House team to provide specialist knowledge and supply the wind turbine and photovoltaic panels, as well as providing the building’s solar hot water systems, gas back-up systems, space-saving heat pumps and insulation products.

The Lite-House apartment is open as a show home until the end of 2010, and is being used as an information centre on ecologically-responsible architecture and construction. For more information visit www.lite-house.co.nz.