Design for a Sustainable Future

Organized around a holistic design approach, this class examined the synthetic relationship between performance and design in addressing issues of sustainability in the built environment. The workshop introduced the theories behind a resource-efficient built environment and guided the design process by focusing creativity around performance goals. Students explored ways to effectively integrate considerations such as energy-efficiency, material use, structural stability, and occupant comfort into the design process. The chosen case study was an actual project : a second campus for the Jay Pritzker Academy in Siem Reap, Cambodia. The students worked in interdisciplinary teams to generate three different design proposals for the masterplan and various classroom structures for a new campus for 400 students with the goal of creating a truly sustainable and environmentally responsible 50,000 square foot campus. Areas that were particularly emphasized for this case study were energy, comfort, daylighting, as well as conservation of water and material resources, as drivers for better design for the campus and the classrooms. The goal of the workshop was to teach students that quality design, sustainability, and affordability are not mutually exclusive. By engaging the performance goals as integral to the creative design process, the hope is to synthesize design and building technology in productive ways to create a more sustainable future.

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