Sunday, September 20, 2009

An Eco-urbanism view of Tall Buildings

Do we really want Tall Buildings, or do we really need them?
Phil and DNC will be running a workshop in the Architectural Research Methods module. The group will study the question of ‘Densification’ as a strategy for urban sustainability. We know that Tall Buildings have higher embodied energy. Taking the longer view, into the ‘Olduvai’ post-oil era, dense cities may be more sustainable, and tall buildings can provide a large population with an urban habitat with a smaller footprint. Aside from the minority of extreme iconic structures, the majority of working tall buildings do a good job, but could do it better. The work will include mapping and statistical data, virtual modelling, and scenario building, making comparisons of high and low density urban habitats, considering embodied energy and energy consumption holistically.

If we have too many students in the workshop group, we will find other ways to avoid repetition by offering other topics, such as patterns of living and working in high-rise (with reference to past mistakes, and more recent Asian experience); Ecodesign concepts in tall buildings.

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