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LEAFHouse was built by University of Maryland architecture students for the 2007 Solar Decathlon on the National Mall. It won 1st place among U.S. school entrants and 2nd place worldwide. LEAFHouse is now on the grounds of the University of Maryland. The Potomac Valley Architecture Foundation (PVAF) owns LEAFHouse and operates it as a public showcase and educational venue for sustainable design and sustainable living, as well as renting it to AIA Potomac Valley for use as the chapter house.
A unique property like LEAFHouse presents unique maintenance challenges as well. Each of its technical systems, including solar electricity, solar hot water, radiant floor heating, and rainwall filtration, require ongoing monitoring, servicing and periodic upgrading. Because the house is deliberately situated in full sun to power its solar array, its exterior takes an extra beating from exposure, necessitating the refurbishment and replacement of some of the materials. The louver door refinishing and stabilization project pictured below is one example.
Being able to present LEAFHouse to the public with all its solar energy elements fully functional is a critical part of our outreach mission. We welcome the expertise and in-kind donations of architects, builders, energy consultants, and manufacturers toward the maintenance of LEAFHouse. We also appreciate your tax-deductible donations! Use the donation button below to contribute directly to our LEAFHouse fund.