Design efficiency is universally acknowledged and refers to both structure and the using of processes that are environmentally responsible and resource efficient throughout a building’s life cycle: from siting, design, and construction, to operation, maintenance, and renovations, and finally to future demolition and disposal. It’s a sustainable creation that thinks about the future from the outset.
Sustainable buildings are designed and constructed to high environmental standards, minimising energy and water consumption, and making use of construction materials which are low embodied energy and resource efficient. They also enhance the natural environment and safeguard human health.
Considerations for sustainable building design would include:
Environment: and the conservation and enhancement of the site ecology and bio-diversity.
Energy: minimising energy consumption, high levels of insulation, reviews of solar gain, shelter from prevailing winds, maximising daylight, energy efficient lighting.
Water: consumption of water efficiency, rainwater harvesting, water efficient appliances and the prevention of flooding and pollution.
Transport: locations close to public services, proximity of amenities and places of work.
Materials: use of long-life materials of low environmental impact, avoidance of toxic materials
Health and Well-being: use of non-toxic finishes and materials, natural daylighting, freedom from noise, internal air quality, private external green space and integration with local surroundings.
Affordability: minimise the cost of ownership: if it isn`t affordable, it cannot truly be sustainable.
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