Sustainable architecture is becoming more and more popular, as people are starting to realize the importance of using resources wisely. There are many incredible projects out there that are changing the world for the better, and we wanted to share some of our favourites with you. These projects use sustainable design principles to create beautiful, functional spaces that minimize environmental impact. They are changing the way we think about architecture and proving that it is possible to build in a sustainable way that benefits everyone!
The first project on our list is the Living Roof at the California Academy of Sciences. This innovative roof is made up of native plants and helps to insulate the building, reduce stormwater runoff, and create a habitat for local wildlife. The academy has also installed solar panels and a rainwater harvesting system, making it one of the most sustainable buildings in the world.
Another amazing sustainable project is Verdant Power’s Roosevelt Island Tidal Energy Plant in New York City. This plant uses the tides to generate electricity, providing clean energy for the island’s residents. It is also designed to withstand flooding and sea-level rise, making it a resilient solution for climate change.
Sustainable buildings in the UK
These are not a new concept, with the first Passivhaus project popping up in 1993, 16 years before the Living Roof. The BedZED development in South London was also completed in 2000 and was one of the UK’s largest zero-carbon communities. It is made up of 82 homes, a community centre, health centre, office space, and even a pub. All of the buildings are designed to be highly energy-efficient and make use of sustainable materials.
The working farm at Findhorn Ecovillage is another great example of sustainable architecture. This community in northern Scotland grows its own food, generates its own power, and treats its own waste using cutting-edge technology. The ecovillage also has a number of beautiful buildings that have been designed to blend in with the natural landscape.
Dollis Park, Finchley, North London
The extension and refurbishment of existing office buildings in Finchley to create 23 new flats and a 128-bed hotel. The apartments will be built to BREEAM Ecohomes’ Excellent standards, while the hotel will meet BREEAM New Construction 2011’s Very Good criteria. U.K. based Sustainability Consultants SRE Ltd advised on how to satisfy the BREEAM standards, including individual gas boilers, green roofs, and higher fabric specifications, as a “change of use” development. The project is exceeding expectations and is just one of many sustainability projects by SRE.
Sustainable architecture is not only good for the environment, but it can also be beautiful and innovative. These examples show that sustainable design can take many different forms, from urban farms to tidal energy plants to regeneration of older buildings and transforming usage to give a building a new lease of life. We hope that this list inspires you to learn more about sustainable architecture and maybe even visit some of these incredible projects yourself.