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sustainable architecture
design strategies + innovative technologies that promote a sustainable built environment
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University of Cambridge Sports Centre by Arup Associates

University of Cambridge Sports Centre by Arup Associates | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Located in the expanding western part of the city, the new University of Cambridge Sports Centre by Arup Associates is open to students, academic staff, and the public. The building sits at the edge of the town's green belt and efficiently responds both to its rural environment and to an extremely versatile program, as the first part of a three-phase scheme within the West Cambridge Masterplan.

To achieve an open-plan space that would be flexible enough to adapt to different sporting activities, the centre's dome-like roof, made of glulam beams, spans over 36 metres and opens up to let natural light and ventilation in. Photovoltaic cells, solar hot-water collectors, and external electro-mechanical actuators that control the façade louvers' opening and closing, contribute to the building's energy efficient strategy.

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An Adaptable Shipping Container That Transforms For Different Uses Seamlessly

An Adaptable Shipping Container That Transforms For Different Uses Seamlessly | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Creatives from China’s Jikerzhicheng Product Design has transformed a shipping container to be a beautiful, modular, flexible space. 

The designers used as little material as possible and incorporated circular cutouts at the tops and sides in order to allow natural light to enter, and cutouts at the bottom allow for movement in and out of the container. 

The ability and flow of the space was to be seamlessly integrated to nature. The mobile container also has the potential for constant evolution and multiple uses, such as transforming from a stage set to sleeping quarters and even a tea house, if you desire.

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Organic Architecture at the University of Versailles Science Library, France

Organic Architecture at the University of Versailles Science Library, France | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Paris-based architects Badia-Berger Architectes have recently completed the University of Versailles Science Library, in France- an efficient building composed of three juxtaposed volumes intersected by a series of voids.

The building acts as a connector inside the university campus, uniting the eastern sloped park and the western sporting grounds, which determines that it doesn't have a main façade, rather, a central position from which its multidirectional nature stems.

The library is comprised of three juxtaposing volumes intersected by a series of voids, which allow for abundant daylight to pour into the building, as well as creating a series of transparencies between the two connected terrains — the park and the sporting grounds. The three separate volumes harbour respectively the entry hall, the reading rooms and internal spaces. "The shape is an expression of our perception of the program and our response to the requirements of a low energy building," state architects Marie-Hélène Badia and Didier Berger, "fully acknowledging lighting and thermal comfort as well as highlighting the site's contrasts."

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Trompetista De Jazz's curator insight, March 15, 2013 12:16 PM

Organic Architecture at the University of Versailles Science Library, France

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Modular Eco-resort Integrated into the Portuguese Landscape

Modular Eco-resort Integrated into the Portuguese Landscape | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Seven suspended micro-houses — each one resulting from a different combination of three modules — delicately hover above the ground in the Portuguese eco-resort of Parque de Pedras Salgadas.


Portuguese architects Luís Rebelo de Andrade and Diogo Aguiar have recently completed the set of houses in the north of Portugal. The small dwellings are suspended on pillars, completely integrated within the surrounding nature.

Designed in a modular, prefabricated system with different combinations of the same three modules — entrance/bathing, living, sleeping for an extremely flexible solution, able to adapt to diverse spaces within the park, creating different morphologies and diverse dialogues with the surrounding nature.

Each of the houses features a large window framing a specific view of the park, bringing the surrounding nature inside, and linking the interior to a balcony and ideal resting space. Each dwelling's cladding evokes local, vernacular construction techniques...

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Adaptable Architecture: Meeting Dome by Kristoffer Tejlgaard & Benny Jepsen

Adaptable Architecture: Meeting Dome by Kristoffer Tejlgaard & Benny Jepsen | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Canadian architects Kristoffer Tejlgaard and Benny Jepsen have slightly altered the mathematical elements of a geodesic dome to form a new modular pavilion.


By using different sized triangular frames with both spherical and perpendicular surfaces, a new lattice form was birthed from that of a traditional geodesic dome. The result is a method of construction that allows surfaces to be extruded, scaled, pushed and pulled while maintaining logic.
Through this altered composition, small niches and crevices opened. Steel footings connect the wooden frame, made of locally-sourced pine. Steel nodes were made to fit standard rafter sizes, making the whole design movable.
The façade's curved surfaces are covered with recycled wood panels, creating opaque faces. Perpendicular surfaces made of PVC film allow light to enter while opening views to the outside. The project was commissioned by BL (Denmark Public Housing) for the Peoples Meeting in Denmark.

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FIS-SST Office building by Zalewski Architecture Group

FIS-SST Office building by Zalewski Architecture Group | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

FIS-SST company's rapid growth forced the need to build a new headquarters. A small building intended for about 60 employees and realized with a very limited budget was designed as a company headquarters taking into consideration fulfillment of its present and future needs.

In the building the ‘low–tech’ building materials tendency was contrasted with specialist solutions aimed at improving work efficiency. Despite the low budget of the investment really good solutions were achieved regarding the functionality and arrangement of space in the building. Limited costs were treated as an inspiration for searching methods and means that can provide at the same time comfort of work and use, high aesthetics and original and good quality design.

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'Coodo' Mobile Living: A Modular Structure That Adapts To Its Natural Surroundings

'Coodo' Mobile Living: A Modular Structure That Adapts To Its Natural Surroundings | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The coodo opens a whole new way into nature, called Mobile Living. Smaller and less costly than a traditional house, the structure consists of less material, requires less land and can be situated in places that normally would not be buildable.


A coodo's fundament consists of a standardized frame construction upon which individual surfaces, colors, appliances, furniture and decoration can be applied. These personal design choices can be changed by the next owner because the coodo is designed as a modular system.

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Lola Ripollés's curator insight, November 22, 2013 2:05 AM
The coodo opens a whole new way into nature. We call it Mobile Living.
First off, the coodo is smaller than a house and hence cheaper because it consists of less material, needs less land and can be situated in places that normally would not be buildable property.
Sílvia Dias's curator insight, November 22, 2013 9:40 AM

cool!

Susan Schuler Blake's curator insight, November 22, 2013 4:27 PM

Pra toró de miolo...

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Experiential Learning Building at University of Calgary by Perkins+Will

Experiential Learning Building at University of Calgary by Perkins+Will | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Located at the University of Calgary, the Energy Environment Experiential Learning (EEEL) building is a five-story teaching facility that allows students to learn in an experiential and hands-on environment.

WIth approximately 11,000 sm of teaching laboratories and 2,500 sm of classroom space, space is provided for up to 3,000 sm of future research labs. The structural module and arrangement of the building systems allows the university long-term flexibility to convert spaces efficiently from one use to another.

The project also incorporates a number of solar control strategies, such as sculpted aluminum spandrel panels and solar shutters that actively track the sun to provide fully daylit but glare-free interior spaces. Additional environmental strategies include the use of thermal mass, an efficient envelope, natural ventilation, earth tubes, and low-energy systems, which contribute to the project using 45% less energy compared to a conventional laboratory building.  Low-flow fixtures and use of captured rain water mixed with recycled process water for toilet flushing reduces potable water use by 64%.

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'Tind' Prefab Houses by Stockholm-based Design Studio Claesson Koivisto Rune

'Tind' Prefab Houses by Stockholm-based Design Studio Claesson Koivisto Rune | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Stockholm-based studio claesson koivisto rune have has created 3 sleek typologies for prefabricated homes that draw from the distinctly scandinavian landscape and approach to efficient living.


The 'Tind' residences draw their name from the norwegian word for 'mountain peak', a concept informed by the remarkable lack of sharp pointed peaks in scandinavian mountain systems. The softened edges of the range lend the landscape a particular beauty that finds its way into the architecture in the form of a truncated, single pitch roof. Floor-grazing windows are relegated to major walls and all apertures lie flush with light-drenched interiors. Rather than a perforated volume, the home is a rhythmic composition of built material and void, and despite the various models of kit houses, every interior is organized by a central entrance way or staircase and seeks to blur notions of interior and exterior.

While prefabricated homes have many historical iterations, the architectural integrity of the 'Tind' series is preserved through culturally relevant approaches to living...

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D*Haus: Dynamically Responding to its Environment

D*Haus: Dynamically Responding to its Environment | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Conceived for the harsh, climatic extremes from ‘Lapland to Cape Horn and Aleutians to Auckland’ The D*Haus concept can respond dynamically to its environment by controlled adaptation to seasonal, meteorological and astronomical conditions.


D*Dynamic can ‘metamorphosize’ and transform itself into 8 Configurations, adapting from winter to summer, and day to night by literally moving inside itself. The thick heavy external walls unfold into internal walls allowing glass internal walls to become facades. Doors become windows and vice versa. The layout can be adapted to suit different living situations, as the design can change its shape and perspective both seasonally and throughout the course not only dawn to dusk but also twilight to sunrise....

One can rotate the house so that the user is in sunlight, while the house generates energy through solar panels. From a manufacturing point of view, the design deploys one set of materials to achieve so many possibilities...


'D*Haus designs are inspired by the philosophy of dynamic living: we truly believe in ideas that can help improve and inspire our daily lives. This can be done through flexibility, adaptability and originality.'

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Patrick Tay's curator insight, January 7, 2013 9:44 PM

Blending architectural, art and design.

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Practical Cabin GJ-9 Concept, Adaptable to Various Natural Settings

Practical Cabin GJ-9 Concept, Adaptable to Various Natural Settings | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Norway based Gudmundur Jonsson Arkitektkontor designed the project entitled Cabin GJ-9, a contemporary small home prototype, easily adaptable to a variety of settings. Developed for mass distribution, the concept of Cabin GJ-9 is highly practical and versatile.

Located in Bjergøy, Norway, the cabin displays an inspiring exterior defined by wood, glass and stone, camouflaged in its natural surrounding. Two volumes make up the welcoming home, one of them accommodating the private area, and the other the service zones. Connecting the two, there is a glazed pavilion containing the living and dining space. The interior atmosphere stays true to a cottage-like feel: wood is present throughout, while a stone fireplace and inviting seating units inspire relaxation...

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Backyard solutions to urban planning issues

Backyard solutions to urban planning issues | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Hundreds of visitors flocked to a new, 420-square-foot cottage in West Berkeley to examine the tiny, sustainably designed "accessory home" as a possible wave of the future.
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Jay C. Estes's curator insight, May 21, 2013 9:43 AM

Hmmm, I seem to remember a similar concept known as Katrina Cottages, or Mississippi Cottages being discussed well before this.  Mississippi leading the way?