Throughout the years, there has been an undeniable impact on the environment as a result of buildings and cities growth. However, the idea of green buildings started becoming more and more popular during the 60’s and 70’s. Ever since, sustainable architecture has seen several efforts in order to minimize the negative impacts of construction projects. Therefore, firms in the construction industry have been looking for design methods, materials, energy, and strategies to comply with social, economic, and environmental sustainability.
In order to fully understand the role of sustainable architecture, we need to know what exactly it refers to. We should also discuss the importance of sustainable architecture projects and go over some examples of sustainable architecture, too. This way, we’ll gain a deeper insight into the benefits and advantages of sustainability in the field of architecture.
What Exactly is Sustainable Architecture?
For both local and international communities, the design and development of sustainable architecture is a key aspect of their growth. More specifically, sustainability works as a philosophy in architecture, engineering, and design. Also, sustainability aims at reducing the negative impact that buildings have on a given area. Showing ecological awareness without compromising functionality is the main characteristic of any sustainable object. Through the use of appropriate, reusable technologies, implementing the appropriate technologies, while being mindful of energy efficiency and environmental impact, help shape sustainable architecture.
The Importance of Sustainable Architecture Projects
There are several social, economic, and environmental benefits that come from sustainable architecture. Therefore, such attempts at creating sustainable homes and buildings result so important to follow and achieve. To begin with, some of the environmental benefits are the enhancement and protection of biodiversity and ecosystems. The improvement of water quality, reduction of waste streams, and the conservation of natural resources are other benefits it brings.
Some of the economic benefits of sustainable architecture include reducing operation costs, improving occupant productivity, enhance profits, and optimize the economic performance of life-cycles.
Regarding the social benefits of sustainability in architecture, we can find that the health and comfort of occupants are enhanced. Also, it improves the quality of indoor air, minimizes the strain on local utility infrastructure, and overall improvement in the quality of life.
Examples of Sustainable Architecture
Because of the relevance and impact of sustainable architecture, there have been several projects and programs focusing on achieving building sustainability. Some of them include the Arizona State University Student Health Services building. This project transformed an inefficient and sterile clinic into an organized, welcoming, and efficient facility.
Another example includes the Bud Clark Commons building, which is a LEED Platinum project. It focuses on helping homeless individuals move towards a more stable situation, giving them a place to live. Being part of Portland’s 10-year plan to end homelessness, this building also saves an estimate of $60,000 in energy every year.
Other examples of sustainable design around the world include the Shanghai Natural History Museum, the Vancouver Convention Center West, the One Central Park in Sidney, and the endless number of green walls being installed across the globe.