Some architectural styles are designed for practical reasons while others are designed simply because the designer likes the look. But then there are special architectural designs that are trying to look at the bigger picture.
One of these types of architecture is sustainable architecture, which is hopefully the future. Because sustainable architecture just might extend the life of the planet and increase the quality of life of those living on it.
Let’s take a closer look at sustainable architecture so you can find out more about what you can do to create a better future. Or perhaps learn about the buildings in your area and what they are doing to help out as well.
What Is Sustainable Architecture?
Sustainable architecture has one primary thing in mind. The future of our earth. That’s why it is so important. There are small things you can do throughout your day to help the earth become more sustainable.
For example, eliminating your littering altogether and using less water at home. But then there are larger things you can do like creating a highly sustainable home with some sustainable architecture.
History of Sustainable Architecture
Sustainable architecture is actually older than it is new. Thousands of years ago, humanity knew to preserve the earth. They knew it was best to keep the earth happy and healthy for the betterment of all of humanity.
Homes were made out of cobb, water was drawn from local sources, and energy from the sun. But the longer time went on, the less aware people got. It wasn’t until the 1980s that awareness was once again made a priority.
In America, it started when an architect named Bob Berkebile tried to convince the American Institute of Architects to try harder and do better. That’s when the board decided to make a change and half of America followed.
To this day, many people all over the world have failed to do something for our planet. But as time goes on, it seems that newer generations seem to be caring more about what the earth will look like in the future.
What Makes Architecture Sustainable?
It’s easy for a company to say that its buildings are sustainable, but unless it has at least a few of these features, then it probably isn’t. Here are some things you can check off of your list and more for you to strive towards.
Renewable Energy Appliances
Most families agree that having appliances is important. So you don’t have to toss out the dishwasher in order to conserve energy and water. What you can do is buy appliances that are made especially for this purpose.
Matched Energy Output
If you are going to use much energy, then make sure that the energy you use is released back from the building. This is an important thing to learn about if you are getting into sustainable architecture.
This is probably the easiest thing you can do for sustainable living. Not only can you create drain systems that recycle the water but you can also vow to use less water with your appliances, when showing, and with your sink.
Renewable Building Materials
Use materials that are renewable and biodegradable. You don’t want that building to be standing there in a couple of hundred years. You want it to be able to decompose and be taken apart with all of the materials returning to the earth.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
This one is quite obvious but it needs to be said. Reuse anything that you can. Recycle everything. Reduce your intake and increase your output. Most importantly, repurpose anything that you can make use of.
The smaller the structure, the less energy it will use, most of the time. That’s why tiny house living is becoming so popular. It is a great way to go off-the-grid but it’s also a good way to use the least amount you can.
Try to integrate yourself into nature. Use what’s around you, respect the environment, and make your home one with nature. This isn’t just a great move for the earth, but it can be a fun project to take on.
Plants, Plants, Plants
This doesn’t just mean add some flowers to your yard, but dd as many plants as you feel comfortable with. Then a few more! Plant a garden to feed your family but don’t stop there. Plant as many trees as you can!
Sustainable Architecture In The Modern World
If you want to know what sustainable architecture really looks like today, then we have a few ideas for you. These projects and designs will surely inspire anyone who has a heart for our planet and sustainable architecture.
True Open-Concept Sustainability
This home does more than look cool, it is highly sustainable as well. The house is located in Brazil and is almost 3000sqft. Each room has natural lighting and ventilation, cutting down on HVAC and lighting costs immensely.
The slats are made with eucalyptus logs which provide insect repellent, natural heat resistance, and are easy to grow, making them sustainable. Oh, and did we mention that the house is solar powered with solar panels?
The Start Of Something New
All it takes is one big step and you can create a trend that deserves to last a lifetime. This new project in the UK known as Curzon Wharf will be a 53-story building that produces no net emissions.
It will get all of its energy from renewable sources and will be considered the first to produce no net emissions. If this works out like it seems like it will then it will change the future of all new skyscrapers.
Becoming One With The Forest
This gorgeous design is highly impactful and should be recreated all over the world. The buildings have over 700,000 sqft making it able to house over 700 families! Now, this is complex like no other.
It is located in Vietnam and is a set of condominiums in Ho Chi Minh City. The green you see is all bamboo and it is just the beginning of the story that this complex has to tell. We definitely need more buildings like it.
Recycled 3D Homes
There’s no doubt about 3D printing and how it will relate to the future. The only problem with it is the filament used and how it will affect the earth. But this amazing building is made with all recycled materials.
The building is energy-efficient, made with photovoltaic panels, and able to travel anywhere in the world to offer shelter for those working in tough terrain or climates. This house is a little portable miracle.
More Than A Coffee House
What if we could build houses almost completely out of coffee waste? Well, perhaps it can be done. This construction company in Columbia actually built with compost from corn husks and coffee products.
To date, over 3,000 houses and 20 schools have been built with this technique. Hopefully, that number keeps rising because not only is this highly sustainable architecture, but it gives homes to those who may not have one otherwise.
Self-Sustainability With The Nomads
Self-sustainability is a great step towards creating a sustainable world. But when you imagine self-sustainability, you may imagine an off-the-grid home made of cob, which is wonderful. But there are other options.
This 2000-sqft home is just gorgeous! It is built on a slope and enveloped in nature. The home is built with little soil disturbance and no material was wasted for the project. It was planned quickly and efficiently.
Blink And you’ll Miss It
Sometimes, the best houses aren’t the flashiest ones but those that seem to disappear if you don’t look directly at them. This house may be one of the most beautiful houses that we’ve seen, both inside and out.
The small Spanish building was made with mostly salvaged materials and was recently redone with primarily the materials originally used. Beams were added to the ceilings and the home was built with the areas topography in mind.
Printing With Clay
We talked about 3D printing but have you heard of 3D printing with clay? Is it possible that printing with clay could change the way we look at building homes forever? Clay is one of the most sustainable resources we have.
When you imagine a home built with clay you probably don’t imagine one as exquisite as this. You’d never be able to guess that this home was built with a 3D printer that used clay for filament! Project designed by Mario Cucinella Architects.