World's First Energy Positive Hotel To Open In The Arctic Circle in 2021

World's First Energy Positive Hotel To Open In The Arctic Circle in 2021

"Designed by international architecture firm Snøhetta and owned by Arctic Adventure of Norway and real estate company MIRIS, the futuristic circular retreat will harness geothermal and solar energy to produce a surplus of solar power that can be redirected back to the grid...

"By creating such a sustainable building, we aim to encourage a more sustainable approach to tourism by making people conscious about the way we experience exotic locations."

As a Powerhouse building, it will by definition "produce more renewable energy (during its lifetime) than it uses for materials, production, operation, renovation and demolition." Powerhouse is a group of Norwegian NGOs and companies, including Snøhetta, dedicated to energy-positive architecture...

To meet the Powerhouse standard, the Snøhetta team had to optimize energy usage across every aspect of the hotel.

The first tactic was deciding to build the property from naturally occurring local materials, such as stone and weather-resistant wood. These require minimal energy to create and transport, unlike fossil fuel-derived cement or steel, and therefore will lower the building's carbon footprint.

Rationalizing building systems including ventilation, cooling and heating will also keep energy expenditure down, says Khan. Shaded terraces, for example, will eliminate the need for air conditioning during the summer, while geothermal wells will heat the building in winter.

"We've been able to decrease energy consumption by 85% (compared with modern hotels)," says Khan...

Solar power is what will take the hotel from energy efficient to power positive.

Thanks to its northerly latitude, at roughly 66 degrees north of the equator, Norway's coastline enjoys up to 20 hours of sunshine during summer. The architects conducted an extensive mapping of solar radiation in the region, and how it behaves in relation to the mountainous landscape, in order to most effectively harness this resource...

Based on the angles of the sun's rays, the team concluded that a circular blueprint would optimize solar energy harvesting -- Svart's primary source of energySvart will feature about 51,000 square feet (4,800 square meters) of solar panels on its roof, which will provide more than enough energy to power the hotel's everyday functions...

In the summer, 75 degree Fahrenheit days are perfect for kayaking, hiking, and provide glorious midnight sun.

But it's in those chilly winter months that travelers have the best chance of seeing the aurora borealis dance above the Svartisen glacier and snow-capped mountains.

"These types of natural phenomena, in a way, represent a new type of luxury," says Khan. "It's not about gold-plated sinks and bathtubs, but about experiencing nature in its purest form."

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