Designed as a ground floor photography studio with living quarters above, this former warehouse dating back to the 1800s exemplifies how Philadelphia’s existing building stock can adapt in an age of live-work culture. While demolition and reconstruction claimed similar properties during the city’s housing boom, Pickle Factory fell into the hands of a homeowner who was adamant on adapting this unique property.
Using Passive House and building biology design principles, Bright Common successfully integrated the once drafty and unsafe building shell into a healthy environment for the artist and his family. The team managed to limit the use of spray polyurethane foam (SPF) to the insulation of the existing masonry walls and eliminated its use altogether in new construction.
Today, this all-electric, solar array topped rowhouse has a HERS Index Score of 34. The result is a functional, healthy and comfortable live-work space, which respects the brick masonry history of Philadelphia while confronting the climate crisis of its present.
Project Airtightness: 1.97 ACH 50
HERS Index Score: 34
4 kW Solar Panel Array
Energy Recovery Ventilation
Energy Star appliances