Las Vegas loses 74,000 megaliters (60,000 acre-feet) of rainfall to the shallow aquifer per year in the form of urban runoff, the result of frequent major flooding. At the same time, the city is spending precious energy pumping water uphill from Lake Mead to the newest suburbs, and from the deeper principal aquifer to offset what is lost to runoff. Downtown floods because all detention basins are located in the suburbs. We propose a system of smaller basins for the dense downtown to encourage strategic growth.
How can the mandate of large-scale protective infrastructure with meaningful community engagement be obtained? How can the requirements of a “Robert Moses” hard infrastructure combined with the local community-driven sensitivity of Jane Jacobs be manifest? BIG U contains a protective ribbon: 21 km (13 mi) of flood protection tailored to each neighborhood and the community it serves.
Hy-Fi is a new paradigm for design and manufacturing, with almost zero waste, zero embodied energy, and zero carbon emissions. It is a compostable structure that offers a new vision for society’s approach to physical objects and the built environment.
The project creates an affordable, sustainable new model for residential development in a dense urban infill site. The project includes 4 micro-units and 6 adaptable family lofts. FSC wood framing, shaft and party walls sequester 32 M tons of CO2. The building uses mobile app and social media networks integrated with efficient building systems to create a user culture that supports local sustainable services. Construction cost is USD 2,360/m2 at 50% CD’s, meeting the developer’s ROI goals.
The complete DFALD restores the architecture, landscape and urban design within the round of Spadina Crescent. The east façade and green space frame a plaza oriented towards the University of Toronto campus. The silhouette of the building reflects the strategies of daylighting, structure and ventilation. The site’s hydrology is evident in the roof profile, shaped to guide water into pools, bio-swales and ultimately to cisterns for irrigation.
Overview diagram, the Divining LA tool prototype: “Where is it? Let’s (re)Use It”: a fine-scaled geospatial modeling tool for strategically reassessing urban stormwater resources.
Aerial view in the early morning.
The CHUW prototype in the East Village. The facility belongs to a new neighborhood ecology of household waste management. Collection and transportation methods, frequency of distribution, material recovery, and energy generation are all reconsidered. By having a presence in the city, the CHUW encourages a relational understanding of value between used goods and traditional resources (energy, heat, etc). Residents participate through convenient drop-off interaction and fabrication workshops.
The key concept of the proposal is to utilize abandoned or soon to be abandoned underground coal mining sites as potential site to install hydro-pump electricity storage system. The project intends to emphasize the dual function of land, acting as a machine=power generator and simultaneously be an accessible destination for people. From both perspective of “landscape” and “infrastructure”, the project explores the boundary of the two and attempts to juxtapose them with elaborated spatial design.
Pleura Pod is a wall that is composed of multiple layers that are made out of natural or recycled materials. The layers are designed not only to increase the sustainability function of the wall, but also to visually represent the aesthetic aspect of the wall. Even though the schematic design of the wall was based on the notion of sustainability, the ambition was to convey these ideas through an aesthetically developed piece of architecture.
System: the two examples represented use the same four building blocks: a bachelor unit, a one bedroom unit, a two/three bedroom unit, and an egress unit. These base units are constructed from combinations of the same floor, wall, ceiling, kitchen, and WC modules. Contrary to this maximum level of prefabrication and modularity, at the level of the assembly, the system is intended to flex and adapt to site particularities through deformation in plan and differences in stacking height.
The site is seen in red along the coast of San Francisco. The concept of an elevated street allows for a dense, mixed footprint. In yellow are important contextual landmarks. The program diagram shows the approximate size and composition of each “program block” inserted along the parking ramp. Their composition is based on logical immediate adjacencies in the vertical direction, and an even distribution of program along the ramp: thus creating the street without forgoing functional efficiency.
Phase 01, a new construction method study. Ephemeral Concrete explores a sustainable concrete wall panel construction method, finding a creative way to produce exterior concrete panels efficiently. The shape of the concrete panel wall is thin and curved to create a vertical frame.
The winners of the Holcim Awards 2014 winners for North America have been announced in Toronto. The thirteen winning projects share in more than USD 300,000 prize money, and illustrate how sustainable construction continues to evolve – developing more sophisticated and multi-disciplinary responses to the challenges facing the building and construction industry.
Regional Holcim Awards 2014 North America
Watch a summary of statements by authors of Holcim Awards prize-winning projects in North America: What contribution …
Poreform, a water absorptive surface and subterranean basin that captures rain runoff and adds over 75,000 megaliters …
The BIG U project that addresses New York City’s vulnerability to coastal flooding by using a raised berm and sequence …
A cluster of circular towers formed using reflective bricks, designed for and commissioned by the MoMA PS1 Young …
The newly-published book Fourth Holcim Awards – Sustainable Construction 2014/2015 presents an overview of the current global status of…
The winning projects of the Holcim Awards 2014 for North America are at the cutting edge of efficiency and innovation in sustainable…