Bio-inspired research centre
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Permanent link to Research Bank record:https://hdl.handle.net/10652/2319
The building envelope is undergoing change. We still expect it to provide thermal, light and visual comfort for its occupants, but not at a huge energy and climate cost for the natural environment. Designers should look more towards nature for inspiration than towards industry when seeking solutions. The question for this project is: How can lessons from natural systems be utilized to create an architecture that includes and functions like living nature? Sustainable buildings save energy and generate energy, mostly by having or relying on a super efficient envelope. This project will focus on the design of a building skin and other bio-inspired strategies that are sustainable, energy efficient, aesthetically pleasing and incorporate elements of living nature. The brief chosen is to design an environmental and technologies research centre in a harbourside setting in Auckland using the bio-inspired formula of biophilia, biomimicry and bioclimatic principles. The imaginary client is a consortium of University of Auckland, AUT and UNITEC universities. The site is a vacant section near the Silo Park at the Wynyard Quarter (former Tank Farm) on the Auckland waterfront. The outcome of this design process is a 4 level building of approximately 10,000 sq metres, with an atrium and interior courtyard in the middle. The main feature of the building is a sophisticated façade system that envelopes the building entirely. This double skin facade employs biomimicry, biophilic, and bio-climatic principles in a manner that more than halves energy and water consumption compared to a conventional building of this size and purpose. It also achieves superior working conditions for its creative occupants, enhancing both their well-being and productivity.