Good Practice > Buildings > Vitsippan – Passive house apartments, Falun

Vitsippan – Passive house apartments

Region: City of Falun
Implemented on: Local level
Target group: Building stakeholders


The municipal housing company in Falun is currently building 54 apartments in the Vitsippan complex, all with spacious patios or glazed balconies. The buildings being planned in this district were chosen as pilot sites for the construction of passive houses and the actual apartments are designed with a specific energy consumption of 51 kWh/m2. The requirement for airtightness is very strict and set at 0.15 l / (sm2), and the windows have a U factor of 0.8 W / (m2 K). Through the project, the municipal property company, Kopparstaden, has become a leader in the field of energy efficient buildings. No one else in the county has previously built housing at such an energy-efficient level as this. In the procurement process, the company demanded strict and non-negotiable energy requirements and set at the same time set an upper limit on costs. Contractors who submitted tenders needed to show in their bids how they will fulfill energy requirements within the given cost framework.


  • Building houses that are cheap to administer;
  • Contributing to the municipality’s energy and climate plan.


It is about 5% more expensive to build a passive house and, according to estimates, the pay-off time 8 years.


  • Since the buildings have recently been completed, the follow-up of energy efficiency has not yet been started.
  • During the project, the contractors specially trained their construction workers;
  • These passive-house projects have attracted a lot of attention in the region and several study groups have visited the buildings.

Lessons learnt:

  • Building energy-efficient dwellings at a level of 75-80 kWh/m2 with added heat coming from a district heating system no longer entails higher costs. However, when you choose to go down to the levels of passive-house standards, investment costs increase by about 5%, as this project shows.
  • Contractors see this procurement as a challenge, but are nevertheless positive. Compared with national construction airtightness requirements at 0.8, builders now typically manage levels of 0.15. This is such rapid progress that it is worth more publicity.


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