The ground is a giant battery that absorbs and stores solar heat.
Summer or winter, no matter the weather, the ground temperature a few metres down is roughly 8 degrees Celsius. Buildings in Blatchford use that ambient heat to address the largest sources of domestic energy use: heating, cooling and hot water.
Blatchford’s district energy sharing system pumps cool water and glycol into boreholes 150 metres beneath the community stormwater pond. Lines connect to a high-efficiency heat pump in Energy Centre One, where thermal energy is distributed through a network of pipes beneath neighbourhood roads.
Every unit of electricity returns 10 times the energy in heating or cooling. Blatchford’s central heat pump is like a 1,000% efficient furnace, which also doubles as an air conditioner.
Every building in Blatchford taps into that energy with its own heat pump. That means no furnace. No hot water heater. No air conditioner. No chimney. And because of tight building envelopes and high efficiency standards, homes remain comfortable year round.
The system balances different energy needs. Commercial buildings need cooling even in winter, while residential homes needs heat. Waste heat from cooling one building can be used, meeting up to 20% of cooling and heating needs just by balancing buildings.