It is easy to throw around the term “sustainable design” when talking about a new construction project, but in reality, ensuring that a building design is indeed sustainable is a complex process.
There are several ways and means that have to be considered when designing a sustainable building which include materials, energy, resources, space planning, weather, and many other factors. It is a detail-oriented practice that requires experts who are in touch with the latest methodologies and techniques that are proven to be effective and cost-efficient at the same time.
The planning phase takes utmost importance. At the very early stages, architects who specialise in sustainability must create a game plan that incorporates environmental mindfulness into the various aspects of the construction process. They must be knowledgeable on how to maximise the use of innovative materials and advancements in construction to ensure that the end-result will be effective.
Achieving the highest level of sustainability standard requires significant consultant involvement during the earliest RIAI Design stages to ensure sustainability issues are addressed and embedded with the project and not just an afterthought on the scheme.
Overcoming challenges in applying sustainable architecture
Sustainable architecture benefits everyone – individuals, businesses, communities, the economy and the environment. It is true that more and more countries are leaning towards sustainability, but the progress achieved is still not able to keep up with the unceasing demand for resources.
There are also challenges that may hinder the advancement of sustainable architecture and one of the biggest obstacles is monetary cost. While a sustainable structure might save you more money in the long-term, there is still the common belief that sustainable materials and methods are way more expensive than traditional resources.
This is not always necessarily true, and that’s why involving sustainability experts early in the design process is a critical decision. Working with a design team that understands the complexities, demands, and challenges of constructing a sustainable building will be able to better offer proven solutions that can deliver both the required environmental benefits and cost-efficiency.