Net-Positive Design: Creating Regenerative Buildings and Communities

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This presentation was originally released at the 2014 AIA National Convention by Perkins + Wills Kathy Wardle and UBCs Alberto Cayuela. The document highlights the core principles of regenerative design and its importance to future buildings. It reviews how designers are able to incorporate regenerative concepts into current and future building designs. In addition, it shows how regenerative principles are impacting real-time operations at the CIRS building at the University of British Columbia.

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  • Net-Positive Design: Creating Regenerative Buildings and Communities
  • perkinswill.com Acknowledgements/Credits
  • perkinswill.com The greenest building is one that doesn't need to be built at all. Unfortunately, such an approach is nearly impossible in todays growing society. So how do architects address the fact that each building they design, no matter how green, has some sort of environmental impact? The only way is to create structures that give back as much as they take. Regenerative-design buildings go beyond typical green design and construction by seeking to achieve a net-positive impact on both ecological integrity and human well-being. Architects take a full systems approach to design that considers raw materials, cyclical operations, health, and building inhabitant usage. Net-positive performance can be achieved by spilling over to the community the benefits derived at regenerative buildings, which may, for example, sequester more carbon than is emitted by the production, transportation, and installation of building materials; harvesting more energy than is taken from the grid; harvesting and purifying all water needed for potable use and treating/recycling all liquid waste; operating carbon-free; and designing interiors that improve human health, deliver ample day-lighting and natural ventilation, and provide flexibility of use and adaptation for future goals. Course Description
  • perkinswill.com Understand the core principles of regenerative design and its importance to future buildings. Be able to incorporate regenerative concepts into current and future building designs. Understand how regenerative principles are impacting real-time operations at the CIRS building at the University of British Columbia. Course Objectives
  • perkinswill.com Where are we? Regenerate Improve Maintain Operate Stabilize
  • perkinswill.com Where are we today? Regenerate Improve Maintain Operate Stabilize Potential for improvement (co-evolution) Existence (no further harm)
  • perkinswill.com Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, and since the 1950s, many of the observed changes are unprecedented over decades to millennia. The atmosphere and ocean have warmed, the amounts of snow and ice have diminished, sea level has risen, and the concentrations of greenhouse gases have increased.
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  • perkinswill.com LEED Silver Gold Platinum Living Building Regenerative Building Performance
  • perkinswill.com Regenerative Design Transition from Standard to Regenerative Design: a. Van der Ryn (2005); b. Reed (2006)
  • perkinswill.com Trajectory of Design as a Practice, extrapolated from Bill Reed
  • perkinswill.com A building by itself cannot be regenerative, rather it is about the evolution of relationships between place and program What is Regenerative Design?
  • perkinswill.com Its about ASKING the right questions to get a different solution It is not focused conservation and reduction, but asks: how can we do MORE with what we have? how can we get the MOST out of the resources we use while achieving maximum benefits for both humans and the environment? What is the RELATIONSHIP between the program and place? Regenerative Design Framework
  • perkinswill.com Systems thinking Co-evolution for mutual health benefits Site and context specificity Optimum efficiency Key Characteristics
  • perkinswill.com Systems Thinking The site is part of a larger system of systems and actions at one scale can have profound impacts across scales and sites. one scale can have profound impacts across scales and sites.
  • perkinswill.com Compact: Home to 30,000 Complete: Live-work-play-learn Carbon neutral: 100% renewable energy Significantly reduced ecological footprint Many sustainable lifestyle choices Westwood Prince Rupert Spruce Avenue Kingsway Mall YHT NAIT Agrihood Town Centre Technology & Research Blatchford Redevelopment Edmonton, Alberta Global model for sustainable city- building
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  • perkinswill.com Residences with direct Park Access We spent the 20th century protecting nature from people, and we will spend the 21st century protecting nature for people. Glenn Prickett Park areas 2,000 People within 5 minutes walk of a park 28,000 People within 2 minutes walk of a park
  • perkinswill.com Connect with Nature
  • perkinswill.com Development has high impacts on the health of both human and nature. A regenerative project becomes a source of health for both human and ecological systems. Co-evolution for mutual health benefits
  • perkinswill.com [we] come from nature.There is an importance to [having] a certain reverence for what nature is because we are connected to it... If we destroy nature, we destroy ourselves. Edward Burtynsky Photograph: Nickel Tailings Sudbury, Ontario, Canada, 1996
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  • perkinswill.com The Vale: Living with Lakes Research Centre Sudbury, Ontario
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  • perkinswill.com The Vale: Living with Lakes Research Centre Sudbury, Ontario
  • perkinswill.com Site and Context Specificity The site is a complex and dynamic system of systems where the distinct characteristics that distinguish each site drive design decisions.
  • perkinswill.com VanDusen Botanical Garden Visitor Centre Vancouver, BC
  • perkinswill.com Meadows Forest Ponds and Wetlands Ecological Systems Mapping
  • perkinswill.com Ecological Systems Mapping: Meadows Meadows Forest Ponds and Wetlands
  • perkinswill.com Ecological Systems Mapping: Water
  • perkinswill.com Ecological Systems Mapping: Forests
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  • perkinswill.com Abundance and vitality are created by aggregating and not isolating. Achieving optimum conditions for the function of multiple conditions [rather than seeking maximum efficiency for individual parts]. Optimum Efficiency
  • perkinswill.com Academic Building LEED Platinum Certified Pursuing Living Building Challenge Recognition Gross Area: 5,675 m (61,085 ft) Total Project Budget: $36,000,000 Construction Budget : $24,000,000 Substantial Completion: Aug 31, 2011 The CIRS Building
  • perkinswill.com Two campuses: Vancouver and Kelowna 25 faculties, 5 affiliated hospitals 5,000 faculty members (2,200 clinical) 47,000 undergraduates (15% international) 9,000 graduate students (20% international) Ranked 25th worldwide1 Research leader in Canada2 (Science & Engineering. Social sciences & Humanities) $500 million/year Global leader in clean energy, forestry, sustainable development, health research, and Asian studies Commercialization leader in Canada Small city of 75,000 occupying an area of 1,000 acres with more than 400 buildings 1 Times Higher Education Reputation Rankings, London, UK 2012 (17,554 respondents from 137 countries) 2 Higher Education Strategy Associates, Toronto, Canada 2012 The University of British Columbia
  • perkinswill.com 1962 1966 1968 1972 1972 1973 1969 Sustainability of Limits
  • perkinswill.com Regenerative Sustainability
  • perkinswill.com Environmental Integrity Energy Water Structural Carbon Operational Carbon Human Well-being Health Happiness Productivity Net-Positive Performance
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