sustainable architecture
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sustainable architecture
design strategies + innovative technologies that promote a sustainable built environment
Curated by Lauren Moss
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A Concept Twin-Tower Skyscraper In Hong Kong

A Concept Twin-Tower Skyscraper In Hong Kong | sustainable architecture |

Mexican design firm Studio Cachoua Torres Camilletti has designed and developed an ambitious concept that reimagines skyscrapers. 
The concept is 92-stories-high and consists of two parts—for housing and for commerce, linked by bridges. The architects also have an unusual plan to install rice paddies on the roof. 
One of the architects, Adrian Cachoua Oropeza explained that “the farming on the top of the building is an important symbolic gesture as well as an environmental one,” as rice is a staple in Asian countries.
This idea was submitted for the 2014 World Architecture Festival

Norm Miller's curator insight, August 27, 2014 4:15 PM

It's another integration of nature with design but the building looks  a little more like King Kong than Hong Kong

thierry Grey's curator insight, August 30, 2014 9:59 AM

add your insight...

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Light Matters: 7 Ways Daylight Can Make Design More Sustainable

Light Matters: 7 Ways Daylight Can Make Design More Sustainable | sustainable architecture |

Daylight is a highly cost-effective means of reducing the energy for electrical lighting and cooling. Education often reduces the aspect of daylight to eye-catching effects on facades and scarcely discusses its potential effects – not just on cost, but on health, well-being and energy.

This Light Matters will explore the often unexplored aspects of daylight and introduce key strategies to better incorporate daylight into design: from optimizing building orientations to choosing interior surface qualities that achieve the right reflectance. These steps can significantly reduce investment as well as operating costs and so much more...

Mary H Goudie's comment, February 28, 2014 4:38 AM
My husband CANNOT live without his sunshine. Here in Lisbon they used ceramic tiles to move more light into the rooms. We angle a mirror to reflect the sunshine into our kitchen on cold days - toasty!
Lola Ripollés's curator insight, March 1, 2014 12:52 PM

La luz es importantísima par ala eficiencia y para el confort.

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Budapest Students Design Sustainable House for Indoor and Outdoor Living

Budapest Students Design Sustainable House for Indoor and Outdoor Living | sustainable architecture |

It may look unassuming, but this sleek black box is the culmination of a two-year long collaboration of more than 50 students from 7 different faculties of the Budapest University of Technology and Economics.

Initially envisioned by two architecture students and built for the European Solar Decathlon 2012 in Madrid, the goal of Odooproject was to encourage a new sustainable life by designing a house where as much time as possible can be spent outdoors.

Odoo’s square plan has two primary elements: the north half enclosure and the south half outdoor terrace, bordered by the ‘summer wall’ to the south. The design allows comfortable living inside or outside throughout the year as the seasons allow.

To provide a comfortable environment, as efficiently as possible, the house uses both active and passive systems. The compact form of Odoo reduces heat loss, while its organization means it has two south-facing facades. The glass façade exploits solar gain, to heat the interior during the winter, and the solar panels on the ‘summer wall’ generate power from the summer sun...

Mercor's curator insight, February 8, 2013 6:26 AM

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bancoideas's curator insight, February 8, 2013 10:22 AM
Ideas para mejorar la vida
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Phoenix Observation Tower by Bjarke Ingels Group

Phoenix Observation Tower by Bjarke Ingels Group | sustainable architecture |

Located in downtown Phoenix, the 70,000 sf Observation Tower shall add a significant structure to the Phoenix skyline from which to enjoy the city’s spectacular views of the surrounding mountain ranges and dramatic sunsets. Phoenix-based developer Novawest, commissioned the team to create a destination event to provide tourists and citizens of Phoenix alike the chance to enjoy the unique features of the Valley of the Sun.

The future observation tower is conceived as a tall core of reinforced concrete with an open-air spiral sphere at its top, resembling a metaphorical pin firmly marking a location on a map.
Walking downwards from the top through a continuous spiral promenade, the visitors of the observation tower experience all of the building’s programs in a constant motion, while enjoying dynamic 360 degree views of the city of Phoenix and the Arizonian landscape.  
The base of the tower will serve as a public plaza offering shade, water features and a small amount of retail together with a subterranean queuing area. The tower will serve as a working model of sustainable energy practices, incorporating a blend of solar and other technologies.

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Sustainable Architecture: The International Style of the 21st Century

Sustainable Architecture: The International Style of the 21st Century | sustainable architecture |

Sustainability is defined as our ability to meet our present needs without compromising the abilities of future generations to meet their own. The three Es (Economy, Ecology, and Equality) and the three Ps (People, Planet, Profit) are simple guides for sustainability as a consideration in decision-making.

These ideals can combine with 3 current pillars of architecture to come up with a new series of precepts: program, economy, operation, and harmony.

-Program describes the purpose of the building and its ability to carry out that function for the ease and comfort of those who would inhabit it. It is most concerned with people and the human element of the architectural experience.

-Economy speaks to the ability of a building to stand and is concerned primarily with its production and use of materials both physical and nonphysical. It is most concerned with the component parts of that which makes up a building and minimizing waste.

-Operation is all about the performance of a building in all of the non-human aspects, such as light, air, water, and energy. Economy and operation are strongly related and are opposite sides of the same coin; one has profound effects on the other.

-Finally, harmony is an expression of the building as a whole and how well it relates to itself, the world around it, and those who use it. It is the most subjective of the pillars and is mostly aesthetic. Similar to the relationship of economy to operation, harmony is the reciprocal of program; one is the consideration of the building unto itself, the other the consideration of the building unto the world...


In the weeks to come, these four pillars will be covered in more depth looking at the theoretical, practical, and technological ins and outs of Sustainable architecture- the International Style of the 21st century.

Mark Warren's curator insight, December 16, 2012 10:28 AM
Sustainable Architecture: The International Style of the 21st Century
Jemma Tanner's curator insight, October 28, 2013 11:32 PM

This article gave me an idea for a design task activity consisting of making your own sustainable building. If I were to ever create this activity I'd probably find an old building in the city that was going to be knocked down and create a story that the students had to design the replacement. I'd give criteria based around sustainable practices as well as what functions the building must have. The main focus I'd give them would be that the building needs to meet the needs of the residents without compromising future generations. From this resource I would take the three Ps mention - Purpose (does it fulfill the purpose for which it was designed), Physical (does it achieve the physical requirements given) and Pleasing (does it look good). If I really wanted to extend this task I could create a budget for the building in which the students would have to manage during its creation. I'd definitely do this as a group task because collaboration between students always generates more ideas.

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Rainforest Guardian: A Lotus-Shaped Concept Skyscraper

Rainforest Guardian: A Lotus-Shaped Concept Skyscraper | sustainable architecture |

When you add one part skyscraper, one part forest-saving reservoir, and one part eco-laboratory, you get the all-parts-awesome behemoth known as the Rainforest Guardian, a conceptual design that looks like a giant metal lotus flower sticking out of the expansive Amazon rainforest.

Designed by Jie Huang, Jin Wei, Qiaowan Tang, Yiwei Yu, and Zhe Hao from China, the architectural beast is not like your average skyscraper. In contrast to the normally spearhead-like structure of your typical cloud-kissing building, the top of the Guardian has the most surface area. This allows it to catch and store hundreds of gallons of rainwater to save for the dry season. It also gives the building an organic, futuristic aesthetic that seems more at home in a galaxy far, far away than on our own world. Not to mention, the building is driping with dozens of long, wet vines—making it some fusion of nature and artificial design. No wonder it was an honorable mention at this year's eVolvo Skyscraper Competition...

Mark Warren's curator insight, April 3, 2014 2:50 AM

Rainforest Guardian: A Lotus-Shaped Concept Skyscraper

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Green8: A 'Vertical Garden City' for Berlin

Green8:  A 'Vertical Garden City' for Berlin | sustainable architecture |
This conceptual skyscraper for Berlin has a twisted figure-of-eight structure that curves around elevated gardens and greenhouses.

Agnieszka Preibisz and Peter Sandhaus, architects based in Berlin, developed the design to contribute to a new masterplan being put together for the eastern quarter of the city.

Describing the building as a "vertical garden city", the architects have planned a network of gardens and greenhouses that would slot into the two hollows of the figure-of-eight, intended to serve a growing desire among city dwellers for self-sustaining gardening.

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Rotterdam’s Solar-Powered Floating Pavilion is an Experimental Climate-Proof Development

Rotterdam’s Solar-Powered Floating Pavilion is an Experimental Climate-Proof Development | sustainable architecture |

Rotterdam’s Floating Pavilion by Deltasync and PublicDomain Architects is the first pilot project for a sustainable floating district.

In an effort to address the challenges of climate change and sea level rise, the City of Rotterdam has started to build some intriguing floating structures. The first pilot project is a catalyst for climate change-proof architecture called the Floating Pavilion that consists of three connected hemispheres that look like bubbles anchored within the Dutch city’s old harbor.

An initiative of Rotterdam Climate Proof (part of the Rotterdam Climate Initiative), the mixed-use pavilion was designed by Deltasync and Public Domain Architects, and it sets an unprecedented example for innovative, sustainable and climate-proof architecture.

bancoideas's curator insight, January 3, 2013 1:34 PM

Que no se diga que no se puede

François Lanthier's curator insight, January 3, 2013 4:16 PM

Quel projet créatif!

ElenaArcausdeLabadie's comment, January 9, 2013 7:16 PM
Impresionante proyecto, qué tecnología constructiva!
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D*Haus: Dynamically Responding to its Environment

D*Haus: Dynamically Responding to its Environment | sustainable architecture |
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.'

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

Blending architectural, art and design.

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Five of the World’s Most Sustainable Building Concepts

Five of the World’s Most Sustainable Building Concepts | sustainable architecture |

As most of us know from hearing the word too many times, sustainable building covers a very wide range of definitions. But regardless of how we might define something and spar on who has the best meaning, the idea of practicing sustainability for what we build and how we live is a measure we should put into practice as often as possible. Here is one analysis by guest writer, Jay-Jay Stephens, concerning five of the world’s most sustainable building concepts. In hopes of creating a dynamic platform about sustainability, your comments are invited so we might expand our reporting on the subject...

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