A community within a community, BVCH offers fourteen dwelling units in three multi-family buildings and five new single-family cottages on 2+ acres within steps of Bristol’s bustling Main Street. VIA worked with BVCH to renovate three historic homes (c. 1860’s and earlier) along North Street and build a similar style structure that respects the street context (see Historic Places for more details). Renovations ranged from simple upgrades to full reconstruction. VIA helped the cooperative-structured community make long-term and best-value decisions around sustainability and energy efficiency.
In addition to upgrades at 8 North Street, VIA used modern building science for project-wide energy efficiency. Many south-facing windows take advantage of passive solar gain. Comprehensive air sealing, air-tight triple-glazed windows, electric and heat pump hot water heating, heat recovery ventilation, and air-source heat pump heating systems combine to provide affordable strategies for smart energy use. Standing seam metal roofs with southern exposure accommodate rooftop-mounted photovoltaic systems, offsetting 25-30% of the community’s energy consumption. All of the newly constructed buildings meet Efficiency Vermont’s High Performance Home standard.