May Street Passive House Fourplex

Bringing modern and eco-conscious design features to life within an established residential community.

May Street Passive House Fourplex

The design concept of this Passive House fourplex presents an elegant and eco-conscious addition to the established Victoria community of Fairfield. It brings a sense of timeless architecture that responds to the uniqueness of the location, adding to the strength and character of the area, while being respectful to neighbouring properties.


Multi-Family Home


Completed 2022



Victoria, Canada


Four suites, 927 sqm


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The low slope roof will allow for future installation of photovoltaic panels.

Two suite entry doors together with the 2 level building mass will appear like a duplex.

Landscape design includes a rain-garden with new trees that (when matured) won't detract from accessibility and views.

Triple pane doors and windows used throughout.

Solar Ready Design elements and solar shading.

Use of natural and recyclable building materials, and where possible materials sourced within 800km of the site.

LED lighting, low-flow plumbing fixtures, and energy efficient appliances used.

Stormwater retention on site through rain-gardens as well as extensive green roof space.

Secure bike storage and off-street parking stalls.

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The building design concept is geared toward several important aspects that maximize daylight and views to achieve the international Passive House standard, as well as maintain a sense of privacy for neighbours. The sites unique topography make up translates to the building design changing: from a two level street frontage at the north— to a three level garden view to the south. The side-by-side suites are shifted horizontally along the centre partition to break up the building mass and create small scale residential proportions.

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Vertical, narrow windows and coloured panels along the east and west of the buildings elevation add rhythm and visual interest.

Solid volume of wood wall panels help to define the massing and create a rhythm of vertical elements on the east and west elevations. This is separated by colourful glass panels that extend the vertical windows and visually connect the upper floors above. The lower floor is built into the hill and constructed of concrete with an architectural board-form finish. This texture will be complementary to the vertical board and batten cedar siding above, which is pre-stained with a silver grey weathered finish.

The north facing elevation along May Street is framed with vertical cedar siding, but features beveled horizontal cedar siding in a light turquoise blue colour for the primary facade. The beveled siding pays homage to the distinctive Stewarts Monuments building at the corner of May St. and Eberts St., and flows from top to bottom via a sloped entry soffit over the inset main floor and glazed front doors.

Materially, the building designs use of a minimal exterior palette combined with high quality, durable and traditional finishes ranging from concrete, rough sawn west coast red cedar, solar shading, Passive House certified windows, and smooth stucco soffits under the balconies. The result is a building that achieves an elegant, and timeless expression while offering extensive use of environmentally conscious solutions.

As a further and final feature of visual interest, coloured glass spandrel panels along the side elevations will create visual interest and a lively expression, and complement the palette of exterior materials used on the rest of the building.

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The Team

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