sustainable architecture
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sustainable architecture
design strategies + innovative technologies that promote a sustainable built environment
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Historic modern house renovated to Passivhaus standard

Historic modern house renovated to Passivhaus standard | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

A mantra here is that "the greenest building is the one already standing." There have been far too many posts about the loss of yet another Paul Rudolph houseor the razing of yet another brutalist classic. Often it is claimed that modern buildings are energy sinkholes and are impossible to modernize.

Then there is the Williams-Levant house, built by architect and former Frank Lloyd Wright employee Barry Byrne in 1934 for the pianist/ comedian Oscar Levant in Westport, Connecticut. It not only has been saved and modernized, but it actually has been renovated to Passivhaus standards, no easy feat, by Doug Mcdonald of Mudagreen.com, with Ken Levenson and Gregory Duncan as Passive House consultant...


The original Passivhaus standard was designed for new construction, with siting and sun angles being an important consideration. You can't do much about that in a renovation, so a special standard, EnerPHit, was developed by the German Passivhaus Institute. It calls for a reduction in thermal bridges, improved air tightness, high quality windows and a LOT of insulation, resulting in energy savings of between 75 and 90%...


Read the complete article for more on the strategies employed in the modernization of this historic structure.

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John Lasschuit ®™'s comment, March 8, 2013 2:22 PM
Great!
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Preservation & Environmentally Responsive Architecture: Villa Solaire by JKA and FUGA

Preservation & Environmentally Responsive Architecture: Villa Solaire by JKA and FUGA | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Revisiting traditional construction techniques, French architecture studios JKA and FUGA have converted an 1826 farmhouse into a luxury villa. Conceived as a sundial and exposed in its four façades to the path of the sun, Villa Solaire responds to its environment while maintaining historic integrity.


Located in the district of Pied de La Plagne, Morzine, France, the volume was singled out by the municipality as a landmark for traditional architecture.  Seeking to preserve its appearance while allowing light to enter the building, the architects used a traditional technique of decorative cut-outs within the uniform wooden cladding in a simple and contemporary pattern.


"Throughout the year, the surrounding roofs and buildings cast their shadows on the façades," state the architects. "The pattern within the cladding is designed to respond to the path described by these shadows". JKA and FUGA further explain that the house was conceived as a sundial, exposed in its four façades to the path of the sun: thus the name Villa Solaire...

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Pedro Barbosa's curator insight, December 29, 2012 6:12 AM

Arquitectura & Design Sustentáveis, sem fundamentalismos : Gosto!

 

Pedro Barbosa | www.pbarbosa.com | www.harvardtrends.com

Fabián Salazar Bazúa's curator insight, March 11, 2013 7:07 PM

Ejemplo de la efectividad de las nuevas técnicas de construcción. Utilizando las energias renovables y alterando construcciones ya hechas.

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the Convent de Sant Francesc, Spain + Historic Preservation

the Convent de Sant Francesc, Spain + Historic Preservation | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The intervention in the church of the convent of Sant Francesc, located in the Catalan town of Santpedor, converted the building into a cultural facility, allowing the building to be put to use as an auditorium and multipurpose cultural space. In the future, a third stage will allow the upper floors of the chapels to be used as a historical archive.

The renovation of the building has been developed with the goal of differentiating the new elements constructed (using contemporary construction systems and languages) from the original elements of this historical church.

With the aim of preserving all aspects of the building’s past, the intervention has not hidden traces, wounds or scars. Thus, they have remained visible depressions, holes where the altarpieces once were, traces of missing elements.

The construction and the building methods used have sought to strengthen the church without deleting the signs of deterioration the building has suffered. The intervention has sought to preserve the building’s historic legacy by adding new valuesthat enhance it and give this ancient convent a unique, contemporary form...

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Bogbain Mill residence: A former mill in Scottland transformed into a contemporary home

Bogbain Mill residence: A former mill in Scottland transformed into a contemporary home | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Incorporating the ruins of a former mill, the Bogbain Mill residence designed by Scottish studio Rural Design, does not lack originality. In developing the new building plans, the architects started gathering ideas from the site, where old walls were inhabited by green plants, as nature was taking over: “Our clients brief was for a large family house. We were keen to re-imagine the building in a progressive form, layering a series of forms over the ruins to create a clear juxtaposition of old and new.

All the forms create new and intriguing courtyard spaces, allowing our client to engage in his passion for gardening.” Even though the interior use of wood and stone pays tribute to the character of the building, once inside, it is difficult to believe this impressive residence was once a former mill. Space and elegance are the main characteristics of this home in Scotland, which we invite you to discover in detail.

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Civic Centre in Palencia by Exit Architects

Civic Centre in Palencia by Exit Architects | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Rehabilitation of Former Prison of Palencia as Cultural Civic Center...

Madrid studio Exit Architects has designed a civic and cultural centre inside a former prison in Palencia, Spain. Constructed from load-bearing brickwork, the nineteenth century building comprises four wings that have been completely refurbished to accommodate an auditorium, a library, multi-function rooms and classrooms for art and music.

The project that respects the existing building, which is given a contemporary, lighter appearance, and where the natural light plays a key role...

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Ferrous House - Greensource Magazine

Ferrous House - Greensource Magazine | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

While they may be socially isolated, environmentally untenable, and economically irresponsible, most Americans live in suburbs, and even prefer them. The owners of Ferrous House count among this majority: This husband and wife live in Spring Prairie, Wisconsin, about 45 minutes’ drive from downtown Milwaukee, in a subdivision that lines a nature preserve. Yet when it came time to renovate their darkly lit 1,300-square-foot house, the couple defied convention...

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UK Water Pumping Station Converted Into Sophisticated Modern Home

UK Water Pumping Station Converted Into Sophisticated Modern Home | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Camouflaged in the north of England, UK, this exceptional two-story building is the result of a notable architecture conversion. The Pump House is the contemporary and sophisticated version of a former water pumping station in Ilkley and shelters three bedrooms, two bathrooms and two receptions. Its exterior stays true to the origins of the building and displays an intriguing brick finish. Once inside, the overall perspective is bent, as a potential visitor is likely to be surprised by the highly modern interiors. A generously sized living and dining space acts as the focal point of the entire house. The attention to detail is obvious in every corner of the project, from the lighting elements in the living area to the specially commissioned bathroom with imported marble from Italy. State-of-the art technology is also a defying factor for this home, equipped with infrared high security cameras and intercom system with electric gates...

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21st Century Roof for Molinete Roman Ruins - eVolo

21st Century Roof for Molinete Roman Ruins - eVolo | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The building is essentially a cover protecting the remains of a Roman assembly (thermal baths, forum and domus) in the archaeological site of Molinete Park in Cartagena, Spain.
This cover is certainly another piece in the urban area of Cartagena whose main architectural challenge is to reconcile very different architectures, from the roman times, passing through baroque to contemporary architectures, making them vibrate together in the neighborhood. It is a transition element, between very different city conditions, in size and structure, from the dense city centre to the slope park.
The primary goal of the project is to respect the existing remains, using a long-span structure, which requires the least amount of support for lifting the cover. The intervention unifies all the remains in a single space, allowing a continuous perception of the whole site. The cover also generates a new urban facade in the partition wall.
The project also pursues a sense of lightness and is conceived as an element that allows light. The inner layer is built with a modular system of corrugated multiwall translucent polycarbonate sheets. The outer layer, constructed with perforated steel plates, qualifies the incidence of light and gives a uniform exterior appearance.
Besides to the steel structure, the project proposes an elevated walkway parallel to the street. It is a very light structure hanging from the steel beams. Conceived as a glass box, with a faceted, partially visible geometry, it builds the street façade and allows a view of the ruins from three meters height. It is also accessible for disabled visitors. This high path permits an overall vision of the roman remains.

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Why Historic Buildings Are Greener Than LEED-Certified New Ones - Environment - GOOD

Why Historic Buildings Are Greener Than LEED-Certified New Ones - Environment - GOOD | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
For buildings of comparable size and use, old buildings are almost always the greenest buildings.

Buildings eat up a huge amount of energy—about two-fifths of the country’s total use—so to suppress their appetite for power, efficiency entrepreneurs are churning out a suite of nifty technologies, like automatically shading windows, smarter thermostats, and high-tech heating and cooling systems. But a new report from the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Preservation Green Lab concludes that constructing new, energy-efficient buildings almost never saves as much energy as renovating old ones.

Renovated buildings outperformed new buildings on energy savings in every category: single-family homes, multifamily complexes, commercial offices, “urban village” mixed-use structures, and elementary schools. Though the conclusion may seem counterintuitive in an age of ambitious LEED standards in many new buildings, consider that it uses more energy and creates more impact to construct an entirely new building than to fix up one of the same size for the same purpose. The only exception to the lab’s finding was converting a warehouse to a multi-family dwelling, which required enough extra materials that creating a new building was the greener choice...

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The Avenue House by Neil Architecture

The Avenue House by Neil Architecture | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Australian firm Neil Architecture's Melbourne project The Avenue consisted of designing two houses for its clients: one to keep, and one to sell.

The site is located on an established suburban street, where there was a mandate to protect existing vegetation. For this reason, the houses weave around the the original landscape features and interlock with each other with the use of a wall. The exterior is clad with vertical shiplap timber (a type of inexpensive wooden board) and cement with a velvet finish.

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Casa Ceschi by Traverso Vighy

Casa Ceschi by Traverso Vighy | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Giovanni Traverso and Paola Vighy inserted a new skeleton of laminated wood into a building in the historic center of Vicenza...

Traverso Vighy's approach to a renovation is to try to tread lightly, to create as little disturbance on their sites as possible, whether in environmental or, as in this case, architectural ones. These projects are therefore careful orchestrations, where many parts consist of pre-assembled elements, architectural objects maintain a marked structural independence, and whose details interact with their surroundings.

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Winery HQ in Spain by Estudio Barozzi Veiga

Winery HQ in Spain by Estudio Barozzi Veiga | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

On the edge of the small Medieval town of Roa in the north of Spain, the new headquarters of the "Ribera del Duero" winery rises up solemnly. Estudio Barozzi Veiga in Barcelona handled the new building and the restoration of the existing property.

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Landmark Reincarnate: Palazzo Campari in Milan

Landmark Reincarnate: Palazzo Campari in Milan | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Considered ahead of its time even in the 1960s, when it was first built, the Palazzo Campari building, (now La Serenissima) located in the historic centre of Milan is today a refurbished modern wrap.


New owners commissioned firm Park Associati to refurbish the landmark on the corner of via Turati and via Cavalieri in the historic centre of Milan, with careful attention to the preservation of its character. They also wanted to turn an inefficient building into an efficient one and provide a modern make-over. 


Other distinct features like reclaiming space on the ground floor opened up the areas, while pulling back elevations made it possible to eliminate cold bridging.


This, along with other energy-conserving measures got the building a Gold LEED certification. Useful floor area was relocated, allowing new spaces to be built and given away for tertiary use. Meanwhile, the landscaped courtyard, which forms the heart of the complex, has been reinterpreted in a contemporary setting...

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House DS: a minimalist extension to a Belgian farmhouse...

House DS: a minimalist extension to a Belgian farmhouse... | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

House DS is a minimalist extension to a farmhouse residence in Belgium and a beautiful example of residential restoration, preservation and reuse...

A typical Belgian farmhouse, known as a ‘fernette’ inspired this addition to House DS in Destelbergen, Belgium. Architects Graux & Baeyens addressed the client’s request of ensuring the addition would provide ‘spacious, bright and contemporary living’ and molded the idea of 4 rectilinear volumes as extensions of the existing building, creating a stark contrast between old and new, past and present. A fifth volume in the form of a pool house also serves as a shed for additional storage.

The proportions of the new volumes, the unobtrusive appearance of its minimalist interiors and the well-designed layout of the spaces that connect the two structures present an elegant way of two styles coexisting.

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Morrisville State College: Center for Design and Technology

Morrisville State College: Center for Design and Technology | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
With new curricula that would support its transition from an associate to a baccalaureate degree-granting institution, Morrisville State College asked Perkins Eastman to transform a former agricultural building into a modern light-filled space for new programs in architecture and technology—the Center for Design and Technology.

 

Forming a dynamic new entrance to the Morrisville campus, the character of the former dairy barn, an important campus structure, was preserved—reflecting the College’s longstanding commitment to sustainability—while the design is decidedly 21st-century.

Indeed, the 23,000 sf LEED Silver building has itself become a teaching tool for the College’s new courses in sustainable architecture and interior design, enhancing the creative environment for both students and faculty. With the silhouette of the former barn now clad in energy-efficient glass—letting in ideal northern light to flood the interior spaces during the day—the building serves as a sculptural object by night, transmitting a warm glow from the reclaimed barn siding used throughout the interior...

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Nature-Embedded Retreats: Tea Houses by Swatt Miers Architects

Nature-Embedded Retreats: Tea Houses by Swatt Miers Architects | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The idea for these minimalist Tea Houses was triggered by the need of a nature retreat, located not far from a family home in Silicon Valley, California. The creative team at Swatt Miers Architects was in charge with transforming a vision into reality, designing the three tea houses as perfect observation spots.

According to the official description provided by the project developers, each new tea house was created as a “transparent steel and glass pavilion, hovering like a lantern over the natural landscape. Cast-in-place concrete core elements anchor the pavilions, supporting steel channel rim joists, which cantilever beyond the cores to support the floor and roof planes. With its minimal footprint, the design treads lightly on the land, minimizing grading and preserving the delicate root systems of the native oaks“.

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Dovecote Studio: Preservation, Meet Prefab

Dovecote Studio: Preservation, Meet Prefab | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

On England's Suffolk coast, architects from London firm Haworth Tompkins have made unlikely bedfellows of prefab architecture and historic building preservation. Dovecote Studio was created from the ruins of a Victorian-era dovecote, which was used as a frame for a Cor-ten steel "lining". The inner form was lowered by crane into the aging brick structure.

Say the architects: "The result is a building that from a distance evokes the ghost of the original structure, but, seen from close to, reveals itself as entirely new."

The new form functions as an artist's studio, with a skylight in the north side of the roof that illuminates the plywood interior, which includes a mezzanine with a desk and corner window overlooking marshes towards the sea.

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Going Antiquing: A guest house features salvage at many scales

Going Antiquing: A guest house features salvage at many scales | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Among the old barns lining the road in the Santa Ynez hills near Santa Barbara, California, a guest house adapted from a century-old structure by Carver + Schicketanz Architects seems to fit right in. Come nighttime it stands out like a lantern: The Carmel, California–based architects clad the rehabilitated barn in a translucent structural composite that transmits natural illumination, as well as light from within...

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Casey Key Guest House by TOTeMS Architecture

Casey Key Guest House by TOTeMS Architecture | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Casey Key Guest House, located on a barrier island, is set within a mature oak hammock along Sarasota Bay.

The wooden house is located in a highly regulated FEMA flood zone requiring elevated floors. To preserve the health of the oak hammock, the house is supported on a specialized steel piling foundation system designed to avoid root disturbance and minimize sub-grade impacts to the oaks. As a result, all trees were preserved. ..

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Round Tower in the Uk Converted Into Contemporary Family Home

Round Tower in the Uk Converted Into Contemporary Family Home | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

This tower in the UK was transformed by London-based studio De Matos Ryan into a modern family home. Located in Glouchestershire, a county in South West England, UK, The Round Tower is said to be a Grade II Listed folly, which had been neglected over the years and reduced to ruin. Here is more from the architects: “The design approach maintains the open relationship with the surrounding agricultural landscape by developing a discreet and substantial underground extension to the tower. This underground extension provides the main open plan living spaces and is lit by both a central open sunken courtyard and a lateral landscape scoop concealing the new swimming pool and associated sun terraces from public view. The tower remains clearly the dominant structure, providing the front door to the 4 bedroom family house and the means of vertical circulation.”

Located on the highest part of a hill, the tower also provides lovely panoramic views of the neighboring picturesque village.

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Itu House by Maristela Faccioli Architecture

Itu House by Maristela Faccioli Architecture | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Located in a condominium in the city of Itu, the land of this residence faces a lake and is neighbor to an area of preserved native forest. Given the program and construction constraints, the architects intention was to implement the constructed area respecting the 30 meters setback from the lake, determined by environmental legislation, meanwhile concentrating the majority of the indoors program in just on block. This was determinant in maintaining the lot as much permeable and green as possible.

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Sustainable Architecture: Moza House, Timisoara, Romania

Sustainable Architecture: Moza House, Timisoara, Romania | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

MOZA HOUSE: A traditional house from Timisoara, Timis county, Romania was brought to life by a sustainable architectural project that aimed to rediscover old materials and techniques. We usually see reconverted houses in a completely new, modern scheme, but this one maintains the old spirit and identity, considering that it is normal to offer a continuity of the past to the present.

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An Ivy League cafe earns LEED Gold

An Ivy League cafe earns LEED Gold | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

As they settle into their semester routines, University of Pennsylvania students may notice flora unexpectedly sprouting from the roof of longtime campus building Steinberg Hall–Dietrich Hall. This Wharton School of Business facility was the last commission of McKim, Mead & White, and the green roof belongs to a 1,300-square-foot rear entry pavilion just completed by Voith & Mactavish as part of a second major renovation. Although the Philadelphia-based architects’ limestone and mullion detailing caringly respects the original 1952 design, the green roof also represents a sustainable 21st-century perspective.

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La Concha House by MOOARC

La Concha House by MOOARC | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The house was developed as a fluid, three-dimensional plan, inspired by ‘The Nolli plan of Rome’ 1748.

The internal volume of the 15th Century barn forms the heart of the home. On the lower level, kitchen and dining is position below a more formal living space up on a mezzanine level.

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