Sustainable Design

Architects Declare

 

A recent call for action, Architects Declare, sets out fundamental principles to address the climate change emergency. We have taken the overarching principles of that scheme and applied them to our own practice.

 

Our Sustainability Principles

 

Whether working on a new house or a residential extension we will respond to the climate emergency by designing as sustainably as possible by:

 

  • Working with our clients to raise awareness of the climate and biodiversity emergencies and the urgent need for action to embed sustainability into the brief

  • Encouraging the client to balance short term cost against long term benefits, both financial and environmental, when setting levels of sustainability

  • Identifying clear objectives within the brief against which we can check our design to mitigate climate change

  • Designing to meet current needs but also design in flexibility of use to allow for change so that long life is possible

  • Upgrading existing buildings for extended use as a more carbon efficient alternative to demolition and new build whenever there is a viable choice

  • Collaborating with engineers, contractors and clients to reduce construction waste

 

Detailed Checklist

 

  • Reuse existing buildings and materials where possible

  • Use natural site features and landscaping to reduce energy needs

  • Protect and enhance the existing biodiversity of every site as much as possible 

  • Make best use of orientation and shape to reduce energy needs using sunlight, daylight and natural ventilation to reduce energy needs as much as possible

  • Reduce energy use as much as possible and conserve valuable renewable energy by incorporating the highest affordable levels of energy conservation

  • Reduce stormwater flows by keeping as much within the site as possible

  • Incorporate renewable energy systems into our designs wherever possible

  • Consider use of sustainable materials established as having a minimum impact on the environment obtained from sustainable resources

  • Ensure a clear information flow from client to design team to site to achieve a ‘right-first-time’ culture for our production information to avoid wasteful site rework

  • Ensure that buildings are commissioned fully before handover, and that full operating manuals are provided so that clients are able to efficiently use their building and implement energy saving features

Energy Assessment


Assess the potential for each of our designs to include:

  • Insulation enhancement 

  • Photo Voltaic panels

  • Air source or ground source heating 

  • Sustainable Drainage Systems

  • South facing windows

  • Natural ventilation

Example Approximate Payback Periods

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