architecture for london refurbishes typical edwardian house into low-energy space

architecture for london refurbishes typical edwardian house into low-energy space


‘Low Energy House’ by Architecture for London


architecture for london has recently extended and refurbished an edwardian terraced residence to create the ‘low energy house‘ in muswell hill, london. through insulation, triple-glazing, and improved airtightness, this project dramatically reduces energy requirements while celebrating and revealing the building’s original and modest charm.

complementing the original design are new additions to the space, including a rear extension and loft conversion. 

low energy house by architecture for london 1
all images © lorenzo zandri and christian brailey



an exemplar for sustainable refurbishment of terraced homes


as the home of ben ridley, director at architecture for london, the ‘low energy house’ aims to be an exemplar for the sustainable refurbishment of a typical terraced dwelling in the city, with a constrained budget.‘both embodied energy and energy in-use have been considered in depth,‘ reveals the team. 


the final design, therefore, includes timber structure, triple glazing, and a continuous airtight layer and insulation to the entire building envelope. walls were insulated externally at the side and rear, and internally at the front with wood fiber to preserve the edwardian facade. meanwhile, masonry nib walls were retained on the ground floor to avoid energy-intensive steel box frames.

low energy house by architecture for london 2
view of the low energy house in london, from the garden



high-standard insulation meets natural materials 


the newly-added rear extension was built in highly insulated 172mm SIPS, and all existing building elements achieved a passivhaus standard U-value of 0.15 or better. additionally, an MVHR system provides pre-heated fresh air, creating a warm and comfortable home. the system also filters the incoming air, removing pollen, diesel particulates, and NOx to offer a healthy indoor environment.


materials wise, rather than using cement-based products, the team opted for natural materials like stone, timber, and lime plaster — giving the house an overall warmer and more intimate character.

low energy house by architecture for london 3

low energy house by architecture for london 5
kitchen area


low energy house by architecture for london 6
living room

low energy house by architecture for london 8
timber stairs





project info:


name: low energy house

location: muswell hill, london, UK

design: architecture for london @architectureforlondon

project architect: ben ridley

photography: lorenzo zandri | @lorenzozandri, and christian brailey



designboom has received this project from our DIY submissions feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: lea zeitoun | designboom

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