2013 Challenge Participant:

Brookside Development - Singer Estate

Applicant: Mark Nuzzolo

Project Address: Derby, CT

Bdrms./Sq. Footage: 4 BD - 2891 sq ft

Builder Website: www.brooksidedevelopment.com

Project Overview Project Specifications Project Team Project Photos
The Brookside Development - Singer Estate project in Derby, CT.

General project overview:

Mark Nuzzolo and DJ Collins of Brookside Development have built a home at Lot 5 in Singer Village in Derby, CT.  This subdivision is targeting certification under National Green Building Standard.  The home is seeking certification through EPA’s ENERGY STAR Certified Homes v3.0, and U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Builders Challenge and Indoor Air Plus. Final testing yields a low HERS Index of 45.

Special Features:

The community at the Singer Village seeks to thoughtfully develop the site by integrating the existing stone architecture into new homes and working with the natural landscape of the site.

At Lot 5, the home seeks to aggressively reduce energy consumption while paying homage to the existing stone building on the Singer Estate property. The sloped site will be protected from erosion by storm water management during and after construction. The homes will nestle into the existing landscape. Invasive species will be removed from the site to revive the wetlands as a home for wildlife.  A conservation easement is planned, further reinforcing the commitment to thoughtful planning.

Protection against moisture infiltration, radon, pests, and combustion pollutants are required for earning an Indoor AirPLUS label.


Orientation and Envelope: (windows, insulation, framing)

  • The foundation wall will be insulated with R-10 rigid insulation on interior of the basement wall from top of wall to 3’ below grade using Thermax. This rigid insulation will reduce thermal bridging.
  • The R-25 above grade wood stud wall has a cavity filled with 1.5” of closed cell foam and 2” of unfaced fiberglass batts in addition to exterior 1”polyisocyanurate insulation. The rigid insulation will reduce thermal bridging.
  • The attic ceiling will be insulated to R-68, comprised of 19” of cellulose.
  • The vaulted ceiling assembly above the hall and living spaces will have R-50 closed cell spray foam at the ceiling plane.
  • Air infiltration will be reduced by the dense closed cell spray foam in the ceiling and rigid insulation on the walls. Air sealing will be critical, as the target 1.7 ACH50 is only achieved by very tight homes. Upon final testing, the home achieved the low infiltration rate of 2 ACH50.
  • Windows will be double pane and low-e, demonstrated by specs meeting ENERGY STAR standards (U-0.28 SHGC-0.30; in basement (U-0.46, SHGC-0.61).
  • The home is oriented so the North elevation has the least amount of glazing and some shading, while the East and South elevations have more glazing.

Heating, Cooling, and Hot Water

  • The home is heated and cooled by a Dual-Fuel Heat Pump (95 AFUE, SEER 15, HSPF 8). When temperatures drop below 40-50 degrees Fahrenheit, the heat pump is assisted by the furnace to keep the home warm. The heat pump allows the homeowner to maximize the solar PV production. The ducts were carefully air sealed in order to meet the strict standard of ENERGY STAR v3.0.  The ducts and the mechanical space are fully located within the conditioned envelope. Manual J and D calculations ensure proper sized equipment has been chosen.
  • The instant gas water heating equipment meets the strict ENERGY STAR v3.0 efficiency requirements.
  • Testing after installation ensures the quality installation of the efficient HVAC equipment.
  • A MERV 10 or higher filter is installed in the ducted system.
  • Low flow fixtures are installed.


Panasonic Whisper Green fans are used to satisfy ASHRAE 62.2-2010 minimum requirements. Proper installation was ensured by final testing.


  • ENERGY STAR appliances (refrigerator, dishwasher, and clothes washer) will be installed in the home.
  • 100% CFL/LED lighting will be installed.


The house was designed and sited to accommodate a 7 KW Photovoltaic system. A 6 KW PV system is estimated to essentially cover none space conditioning electrical loads over the course of a year.

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