Have you heard about the 2030 Challenge? It was conceived by architect Edward Mazria, who launched www.architecture2030.org
, a not-for-profit website to help achieve a dramatic reduction in the global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the building sector by altering the way in which commercial buildings and residential structures are planned, designed and constructed.
The 2030 Challenge asks the global architecture and building community to adopt certain energy savings targets over time for new construction, culminating in carbon-neutrality in the year 2030. To achieve this goal, the 2030 Challenge calls for the following goals / targets:
- All new buildings, developments and major renovations shall be designed to meet a fossil fuel, GHG-emitting, energy consumption performance standard of 50% of the regional (or country) average for that building type.
- At a minimum, an equal amount of existing building area shall be renovated annually to meet a fossil fuel, GHG-emitting, energy consumption performance standard of 50% of the regional (or country) average for that building type.
- The fossil fuel reduction standard for all new buildings and major renovations shall be increased to 60% in 2010, 70% in 2015, 80% in 2020, 90% in 2025, and 100% in 2030.
These aggressive targets can be achieved through a combination of sustainable design approaches, renewable on-site power generation and the purchase of renewable energy and/or certified renewable energy credits (20% maximum).
"The road to energy independence, economic recovery and reductions in greenhouse gas emissions runs through the Building Sector." -Edward Mazria
In celebration of National Landscape Architecture Month, the April issue of Landscape Architecture Magazine
has been posted online for free downloading and viewing, compliments of Kornegay Design. Here's a link to the magazine
Check out pages 36 through 44 for an excellent article about a competition to restore a large, previously neglected section of riverfront property in Minneapolis. Each of the four featured competition finalists focused on green concepts and technologies. The finalists are features on this Minneapolis Riverfront Design Competition
Happy April--National Landscape Architecture Month!
Check out the Green Thinker Network at www.greenthinkernetwork.com
. Green Thinker Network is an online source of information and a catalog for the green building industry. The website features products and building materials, service providers such as architects and building professionals, LEED information and guidelines, recycling information, articles and blogs, and links to websites promoting green practices and products.
GTN recently announced its "Sustainability 2011" competition, which seeks the best sustainable products. Judging criteria includes post-consumer content, recycled content, third party certifications, LEED Points, life cycle, energy efficiency studies, and renewable energy production and usage.
For more details about "Sustainability 2011", click here
The Green Thinker Network will have a booth at GreenBuild in Chicago from Nov. 17-19.
Two of my very favorite books on architecture come from the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
Master Builders - A Guide To Famous American Architects and What Style Is It? A Guide To American Architecture are both easy-to-read, informative guides on American architects and architecture, with excellent photos, illustrations and diagrams. Both are terrific resources for those who have studied or are studying architecture and design. Individuals with interest in architecture, but with no formal training, will likely also find the books to be very enjoyable and informative.
The National Trust for Historic Preservation was founded in 1949, and is dedicated to "saving historic places and revitalizing America's communities".
The organization's website
offers some excellent resources, including e-newsletters and blogs, a calendar of events, volunteer and advocacy opportunities, green / sustainable information, and info about historic destinations and tours.
One can also sign up to receive the "Preservation" print magazine when joining as a member. Definitely an organization worth our time and attention..
What is Interior Architecture, and how does it differ from Interior Design?
According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), Interior Architecture education is a program that "prepares individuals to apply architectural principles in the design of structural interiors for living, recreational, and business purposes and to function as professional interior architects." It includes instruction in architecture, structural systems design, heating and cooling systems, occupational and safety standards, interior design, specific end-use applications, and professional responsibilities and standards.
NCES defines Interior Design education as "a program in the applied visual arts that prepares individuals to apply artistic principles and techniques to the professional planning, designing, equipping, and furnishing of residential and commercial interior spaces." Interior design education includes instruction in computer applications drafting and graphic techniques; principles of interior lighting, acoustics, systems integration, and color coordination; furniture and furnishings; textiles and their finishing; the history of interior design and period styles; basic structural design; building codes and inspection regulations; and applications to office, hotel, factory, restaurant and housing design."
The Princeton Review offers a more lighthearted look at each:
I recently read a book entitled "Green Building Through Integrated Design
" by Jerry Yudelson. Author of several books about green and sustainable design, Yudelson is a professional engineer who has chaired Greenbuild
for six years running and who has trained 3,500 people in the LEED green building rating system since its inception.
While the author's writing style is a little stilted, I found the content to be quite informative. The book takes a look at where things are today and where they're headed relative to Green Building and the integrated design process.
Yudelson examines the business cases and costs associated with environmentally friendly and sustainable building design, architecture and construction, and then walks the reader through predesign, conceptual and schematic design considerations, as well as the development and documentation phases.
The author not only looks at the design process from an environmental and public health perspective, but also from a cost/benefit perspective. He gives information about critical success factors such as delivering projects on-time and within budget while managing domestic and/or international certification processes, and does so by studying over 30 LEED Platinum projects.
To learn more about the book or to purchase it, click here
Don't miss it! Through April 4, 2010, the Cooper Hewitt, National Design Museum is presenting "Design USA: Contemporary Innovation
", featuring and celebrating the winners of the past ten years' National Design Awards.
Design USA highlights excellence in American architecture, landscape design, interior design, product design, communication design, corporate design, interaction design, and fashion. The exhibit "focuses on innovation through the lens of technology, material, method, craft and transformation."
This is a great opportunity to see the design achievements of the past decade showcased in one exhibit.
Every October, Cooper Hewitt announces the National Design Award winners. For more information, click here
I recently read an interesting article in the New York Times entitled "Some Buildings Not Living Up to Green Label". The author, Mireya Navarro, describes how builders greatly covet green certifications, but many of the buildings that receive certification don't actually save as much energy as their designs originally predicted or advertised.
I encourage you to check out the article here.
Take a look at the new construction taking place on college campuses around the country. You'll see a combination of great design, engineering ingenuity, and environmentally sustainable practices.
For example, check out Kroon Hall
at Yale's School of Forestry and Environmental Studies (across the street from Eero Saarinen's hockey rink), Cornell University's new Life Sciences building (Weill Hall
), the Rice University Childrens' Campus
, and Oberlin College's Adam Joseph Lewis Center
for examples of excellence in green architecture.
For example, all of the materials used and grown within Oberlin's Adam Joseph Lewis Center are recycled, reused, or sustainably grown and harvested. And the air conditioning, heating, and lighting are passive and energy efficient in as far as it is possible.
The center's interior and exterior landscaping incorporates a mixture of native northern Ohio ecosystems that provide responsible storm water management and capture/storage in addition to the food that's produced.
Oberlin proudly promotes the center's "Living Machine" which it describes as an "ecologically engineered system that combines elements of conventional wastewater technology with the purification processes of wetland ecosystems to treat and recycle the building's wastewater". Water that has been cleaned by the Living Machine is ultimately reused in the building's toilets and for landscape irrigation.
Success will surely be measured in the long term, but the beauty and innovation of these buildings is extremely exciting.
You've probably already heard about the small town of Greensburg, Kansas?
Greensburg was hit by a devastating EF-5 tornado in early May, 2007. The twister leveled 95% of the town's homes and buildings. In the aftermath, Greensburg city officials committed to using 100 percent renewable energy and mandated that every city building be built to the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) LEED Platinum standards.
GreenTown is a community-based organization which has worked alongside Greensburg and Kiowa county officials, business owners, and local residents to help make Greensburg a model of sustainable living for the rest of the country. According to the GreenTown website
, the organization serves as "an educational resource for the community, a conduit through which donations can be distributed, and a representative to those outside the community who are interested in the Green Initiative".
I found both the website and the town's story quite compelling. The site offers a comprehensive database of each of the green homes and buildings that has been built as part of the reconstruction, as well as a walk through the town in the form of a "Green Tour" PDF
. As an example, the site describes the materials and techniques used to build the town's new City Hall (pictured below).
Greensburg's GreenTown City Hall
The town is still a work-in-progress, but what an amazing story!