Search the site ยป



The Design Competition Pilot Project is administered in partnership with the Nova Scotia Home Builders’ Association and Nova Scotia Power Inc.

Technical Requirements
The house design must meet and exceed the current R-2000 standard. This will mean that proposed builders for the project must be certified R-2000 builders. The building must reach an EnerGuide rating of 88-89 on the ERS rating scale and an air infiltration rate of less than 1.0 air changes per hour. The requirement of a high EnerGuide rating will require the use of renewable technologies. Your incremental will be judged on what is being included in the home.

The Design Phase

  • The Design phase will be open until 4:00 pm on October 29th. All applications must be delivered in hard copy form to the Nova Scotia Home Builders’ Association office located at 15A Oland Crescent, Halifax Nova Scotia, B3S 1C6. Five complete copies of the drawings and design plans are required for judging purposes.
  •  The Application process will include a 300-500 word summary of the project design and its main highlights.
  • Justification will need to be provided for all energy efficiency features and the rationale for the heating and mechanical systems and how these systems will work together to reduce overall consumption
  • A description of how the design is friendly to the environment and what features have been included to lessen the environmental impact
  • A description of how this design will reduce greenhouse gas emissions moreso than a conventional design
  • Outline of current and cumulative accomplishments to-date of the designer.


  • The designs will be judged by a panel of three residential construction industry experts, representatives from Nova Scotia Home Builders’ Association and Nova Scotia Power Inc.
  • The decision of the designing panel is final and not open to question by applicants
  • The architect / designer of the winning design must be willing to make adaptations as per the recommendations of the judging panel and ensure suitability of their design in achieving the project’s targets once the builder and house site has been determined – this is to be included in the application and will be done at the cost of the architect / designer
  • The design will become property of the Pilot project with full and due credit provided to the architect / designer
  • The architect / designer must be willing to meet with the Project team and builder at various times throughout the duration of the project
  • The architect / designer must be willing to have their photo, company name and design marketed in association with the project.
  • The fully finished design can be no larger than 2700 square feet (including fully finished basement if one is included)

Benefits of Applying for the Pilot Project for the Architect / Home Designer

  • A cash prize of $5000 will be awarded to the winning applicant(s)
  • Winners are recognized with an award at the prestigious Nova Scotia Home Builders’ Association annual Peak Awards 
  • The winning applicant(s) will receive two complimentary tickets to attend the Peak Awards
  •  The selected winner will be featured on the Nova Scotia Home Builders’ Association  Pilot Project Website 
  • The selected winner(s) will be invited to attend all special events pertaining to the Pilot Project in which recognition will be given to the person/company
  • The selected winner(s) will receive recognition in various forms through the extensive marketing campaign associated with the Pilot Project (at the discretion of the Nova Scotia Home Builders’ Association)
  • Complimentary one-year membership in the Nova Scotia Home Builders’ Association for the November 1, 2010 –  October 31, 2011 year (upon completion of the membership application and that all membership requirements are met)


  • All architects / home designers currently residing in Nova Scotia whose primary occupation is in the residential construction industry.
  • Applicants need not be members of the Nova Scotia Home Builders’ Association, but must have a thorough knowledge of the R-2000 program and its components and requirements
  • Submissions must be a new design 
  • The program reserves the right to choose more than one design if they are felt to compliment the outcome of the project.

Applicant Responsibility

  • Applicants must be willing to share their information with the judging panel, Pilot Project team and other parties associated with this project. Media or various presentations may be required.

Judging Criteria
The design must meet R-2000 requirements and the baseline of the project will be measured against an EnerGuide rating of 80. The judges will take into consideration how far this house can reach beyond the EnerGuide 80 rating, with the target to be an EnerGuide rating of 88-89, and what the overall costs will be to reach this energy rating. A HOT 2000 computerized evaluation will be done on all submissions and will use the criteria within the application to determine the outcome.

The judges will base their decision on the following material:

  • Applications completed in full
  • The innovativeness of the project to include the use of energy efficient products and materials
  • Ability to adapt the project to local building practices
  •  The design of the building envelope
  • Energy efficient components
  • Use of sustainable products
  • Reduction of construction waste practices
  • The mechanical system (heating and hot water)
  • Greenhouse gas emissions reduction
  • Total energy consumption
  • Cost analysis of the products used to reach high energy efficiency targets

Download Application

Contact information:
Sherry Donovan
NS Home Builders’ Association
902-450-5558 / 1-800-668-2001