A compelling case for component-based housing solutions PH performance, affordable and carbon-negative: let’s have it

16 August 2022 by Jason Quinn

Adam Cohen has a bold and creative vision: carbon-negative, decentralised building systems that will take Passive House performance to provincial New Zealand. He outlines it eloquently in this opinion piece for Stuff, using the instantly recognisable concept of Lego to explain component manufacturing.

I’ve known Adam for many years now and he is the real deal. This is no schemer looking to make a buck or the sort of visionary who lacks any practical skills. Adam has built lots of buildings and ran several construction businesses. He’s someone I trust.

Adam established a US business called BuildSmart, which manufactures Lego blocks made from OSB (think fancy plywood) and EPS (the white foam insulation in chilly bins) to make Passive House performance affordable and easy. They even have a foundation system.

Having moved on from BuildSmart, Adam has had time to rethink and focus on making a panel system that is carbon-negative and suitable for local manufacture. His vision for provincial revitalisation and carbon-negative Passive House performance buildings? I want to see that.

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