Net Zero Home Labelling Program

Net Zero MURBS


CHBA members are leading the way and voluntarily building Net Zero homes. The CHBA Net Zero Home Labelling program has labelled over 350 homes since the program began in 2016. And now, CHBA is proud to announce a new Net Zero initiative: advancing solutions, technologies, and approaches to building Net Zero Energy Ready and Net Zero Energy multi-unit residential buildings (MURBs), with the goal of producing homes that are affordable, replicable, and appealing to Canadians. The project is in partnership with Natural Resources Canada. You can read CHBA's press release here and NRCan's here

About the Initiative

The objective of this project is to validate the use of pre-fabrication (panelization and modular construction) and integrated mechanical system technologies, design and practices on Net Zero Energy Ready and Net Zero Energy MURBs to optimize energy efficient performance, increase construction productivity, shorten construction schedules, and reduce costs.

Six builders from British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Ontario will each build a low-rise MURB for purely residential occupancy. The building will consist of a set of separate, stacked units, with each unit having a private entrance either outside the building or from a common hall, lobby, vestibule or stairway inside the building. They will incorporate a minimum of two vertically stacked units and be a minimum of two storeys above finished grade.

The panelized/modular (factory built) construction will be optimized for advanced, high-performance envelopes designed to address high RSI values, thermal bridging, and airtightness, and will include advanced windows. The integrated mechanicals will be optimized and right-sized and will include technologies such as heat pumps and ventilation (HRVs/ERVs). A holistic house-as-a-system design approach will be utilized while optimizing for performance and costs. This will include a focus on increasing construction productivity and reducing construction schedules, thereby further reducing costs.

The project will be led by CHBA who will work with the participating building teams. It includes four stages:

1. Planning: Building teams comprised of the builders, manufacturers, and experts in building science, panelized modular construction, insulation, and windows and mechanicals meet to share information and optimize their designs.

2. Building: Panelized/modular components for each MURB will be constructed and assembled.

3. Analyzing: An analysis of the actual overall cost savings and productivity gains (compared to the code and current practice in each region) for each build will be done to determine the average savings and assess what level of savings are achievable on a mass scale.

4. Sharing: Cross-country knowledge dissemination and capacity building education program to bring the learnings to the mass market industry.

Questions about the CHBA Net Zero MURBs initiative?

Media: For interview requests, please email us.
Industry: For more details on the project, contact Marie Hanchet, Project Manager, Net Zero Energy Housing, CHBA by email or phone at (613) 230-3060 x263.

Meet the Builders


Avalon Master Builder

Visit their website here.
Media Contact: Chris Williams | email |(403) 512-8957
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About the Builder

Avalon Master Builder has been building homes for over 35 years. A leader in green building techniques and technologies in Alberta, year after year, we continue to deliver a high level of customer satisfaction while maintaining a building standard well beyond the building code. All Avalon townhomes meet high externally established standards in energy efficiency, water conservation and sustainable building practices. Each home is tested and audited by an independent third party to ensure those standards are met or exceeded.   We combine style and function and performance to create a comfortable living for each homeowner. The result is peace of mind, an enhanced lifestyle, and a home you’ll be proud to share with your family and friends.

About their project

Name: ZEN Sequel
Location: 338 Seton Close Calgary, AB
Community: Seton
Why they got involved in this MURB initiative: "We are proud and excited to be working with CHBA in building Calgary’s first Net Zero Home certified Multi-Unit Residential Building in Calgary! ZEN Net Zero will offer 8 Net Zero Homes and 8 Net Zero Ready homes at ZEN Sequel. It will be the first stacked townhome building in Calgary to be labelled as Net Zero Energy. It is essential to Avalon to build affordable, energy-efficient and environmentally-conscious homes. We feel it is the right thing to do. Avalon’s experience in building Net Zero homes is most certainly the reason we were selected to participate, and it is an honour to be part of this program."

Big Block Construction on behalf of Innovative Residential

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Media Contact: Alex Miller | email | (306) 979-7421
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About the Builder

When you have a construction project ahead of you, getting to the finish line can be a big challenge. The Big Block team can guide you on that journey. We’re developers who understand the whole process, providing consulting and construction expertise as needed. Big Block Construction was born out of more than a decade of experience under the Innovative Residential banner. The Big Block team has been a part of developing and managing over 20 multi-unit residential construction projects totalling over 1,500 units and $330 million in construction value.

About their project

Name: Willowview Heights
Location: 107 Thode Ave., Saskatoon, SK
Community: Willowgrove
Why they got involved in this MURB initiative: "Part of our vision is to revolutionize the construction industry, not just in how projects are developed and delivered, but also in the types of buildings we create. We believe in pushing boundaries that will help advance the construction industry into the future. Participating in the CHBA Net Zero MURB project will allow us to learn and apply new technologies and techniques that will place us among the leaders in the industry who are creating affordable, high-performance buildings. Sharing our experiences and data within the project will help to educate other members of the industry and inform future policies."

Doug Tarry Homes Ltd.

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Media Contact: Suzie Dennis |email | (519) 851-7386
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About the Builder

Doug Tarry Homes is an award winning home builder, located in St. Thomas, Ontario. Since 1954, Doug Tarry Homes has been developing and building in St. Thomas and the surrounding area, while staying dedicated to our customers and community. Our achievements are the culmination of a legacy passed on to us by our father Doug Tarry Sr. From the time our company founder envisioned his first blueprint, Doug Tarry Sr. lived his dream of designing and building homes of superior quality and craftsmanship for the families of St. Thomas and surrounding area. Doug Tarry Homes recognizes the importance of personalizing new homes, by providing a complete range of in-house design services, including both structural and décor design.

About their project

Name: Miller's Pond MURB
Location: St. Thomas, ON
Why they got involved in this MURB initiative: "This year, Doug Tarry Homes is the proud recipient of the ENERGY STAR® for New Homes Builder of the Year – Mid-size award. This award goes to an ENERGY STAR® participant builder who has shown an exemplary commitment in 2019 to building and labeling ENERGY STAR® qualified mid volume homes. As this was a tremendous honor, we want to do more and doing Net Zero Ready Homes is our next step in energy efficiency. We were also just announced to have been the first builder to reach the milestone of labelling more than 100 homes in the Net Zero program. We are looking forward to working with CHBA and the MURB group to achieve the next level in home building and show casing the leaders in Net Zero Building."

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Landmark Homes (Canada)

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Media Contact: Moheb Habashy | email
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About the Builder

Landmark Homes is a leading master home builder in Alberta. The company builds new single-family homes, duplexes, townhomes, condos and luxury villas in Edmonton and Calgary regions and has crafted over 17,000 homes since its inception in 1977. With a passion in sustainability, Landmark is continually innovating its business practices through research and development to reduce the environmental impacts of the home building process and to make Net Zero homes affordable and attainable to own.

About their project

Name: Maple West Affordable Townhome Project
Location: Southeast Edmonton, Alberta
Why they got involved in this MURB initiative: "The housing industry has evolved dramatically over the last two decades, and Landmark Homes has often been at the forefront of its most significant innovations. We strive to build the healthiest and highest performing homes on the market – at the best value to our customers. So far, Landmark has built 28 Net Zero Energy, over 100 Net Zero Ready and 200+ highly energy efficient solar homes. All the homes were built in a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Edmonton. We’d like to share our experiences, as well as learn from other builders and expertise participating the project, to develop an optimal Net Zero solution for MURBs." Logo

Visit their website here.
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About the Builder was founded in 2013 to combine the skills, knowledge and resources of Sean Mason and partners in the areas of real estate development and home building. In our first 5 years we have assembled 10 parcels of land in Barrie ON, and have successfully completed the construction and sale of 104 homes. Our infill projects are primarily on intensification corridors and are in various stages of development, which are expected to yield another 450 housing units. We continue to travel the world to find better, smarter designs and contemporary architecture to refine and improve the homes and communities we build.

About their project

Location: Barrie, ON
Why they got involved in this MURB initiative: “We truly believe that when you have the ability to do a better job, you have the responsibility to do a better job.”

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Zirnhelt Timber Frames Ltd.

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Media Contact: Sam Zirnhelt | email |(250) 296-3499
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About the Builder

Zirnhelt Timber Frames designs, engineers, and builds sustainable hand-crafted timber frame homes, cottages, and commercial buildings. We build complete homes from foundations through to finished cabinetry or supply custom timber work and lock-up packages. Our timber frames and pre-fabricated wall and roof systems create a “whole home” system and minimize on-site installation time.  We offer many wall systems to suit your climate, budget and building objectives.  We work with you and our team to find the perfect balance between energy efficiency, durability and use of natural and less processed products.

About their project

Location: British Columbia
Why they got involved in this MURB initiative: "Community-based environmental, social and economic values drive our commitment to sustainable building. This commitment is backed by professional designers, engineers and craftsmen who share our passion. Our buildings reflect these values and the lifestyles of our clients."

Thank you to the following partners who are making this project possible:

Partner logos

And the consultants who are helping: