Part 5 How we did it: Star Garments Innovation Center - Getting it Built: Sri Lanka Edition
Building according to Passive House standards in Sri Lanka came with its own set of challenges. The lack of local tradespeople with high performance building experience, lack of locally available materials, the high heat and humidity levels all called for ingenuity and flexibility on Circular’s part.
Low Tech Materials
Many traditional Sri Lankan buildings are built with masonry and plaster, which is inexpensive, can be obtained locally and does not require highly skilled labor for installation. This project uses masonry extensively for interior as well as exterior partitions, and the selected EIFS (Exterior Insulation and Finish System) cladding leverages many of these local skills.
While North American projects can benefit from a number of specialty component distributors, the absence of locally available Passive House materials called for sourcing most of the required items from global suppliers.
These materials were procured directly from multiple manufacturers, each of which introduced logistical and transportation challenges. The windows were procured from India, the EIFS system from Turkey, air sealing tape from Germany and thermal bridge mitigating spray from the United States.
Mockups and Training
A quick study model of the window and wall assembly system was created by staff in the Circular office illustrated the correct sequence of installation, and photos served as an educational resource for the team on site.
A more detailed mockup using actual materials was created at the job site as a reference for workers from each trade.
Up next: We will take a look at the performance evaluation methods.