Makoura College came to us with what we believe will be an increasingly prevalent issue. They had a 60’s/70’s building overheating to an alarming degree. Masterton is in our hottest climate zone. We were asked to solve the overheating in an otherwise sound building.


With partners CORA, MAWDesign and AECOM, we believed we knew how this could be done, but wanted the reassurance of building performance using EcoDesigner Star, our thermal simulation software. This provides us with details on overheating, under heating and energy use in each space, all from within our ARCHICAD 3D model. It allows us to quickly test options.


The strategies the team used to provide a more comfortable, low-energy building were;

  • Insulation

  • Avoidance of Thermal Bridging

  • Airtightness

  • Control of Moisture

  • Ventilation

  • Good Daylighting While Avoiding Over Glazing

  • Shading


We were able to demonstrate;


  • The current building performs badly. It is often unreasonable to occupy. The internal

       temperature over 25 degrees more than twice as often as the DQLS guidelines                   allows. The maximum temperature is in the mid 40’s.

  • The proposed upgrade options can provide a significantly improved performance, providing a building that performs well within MOE’s guidelines.

  • This performance can be achieved without air conditioning or heat pumps used for cooling. While heat pumps provide some performance benefits, there is a higher initial

       cost, ongoing maintenance and limited life expectancy of only 10 - 15 years.