time, we have distilled certain general principles from our experience.
There are some that we use for guidance in our work.
ecology = economy
The words ecology and economy both derive from the classical Greek
for house, "oikos", and both refer to the relationship
between the household and its external context, whether natural or
societal. We believe the two words are linked functionally as well
as linguistically -- that an architecture which is ecological must
also be economical.
integration and multifunction
An essential part of high performance design is multifunction, where
one element of a design serves more than one purpose. Integrated
design is a much-discussed but rarely-implemented process where all
disciplines, systems and components of a building are considered
together, so that the performance of one is considered as part of
the performance of the whole, and vice versa.
Multifunction is elegant,
efficient and robust.
We believe that our buildings should express themselves through
form, material, and systems. It should be possible for anyone from
a child to a professional to appreciate the design
strategies of our projects, and understand on some level their relationship
to form and performance.
connections with nature
Plants can make buildings perform better - moderating temperature,
cleaning the air - but their greatest value is making people healthier
distributed, redundant systems
A trend in many aspects
of technology is toward intelligent, small scale systems. Sensors,
data processing, controls, and power sources, are becoming smaller
and less expensive. Compared to consumer products and automobiles,
buildings are one sector where these systems could have a very large
impact, but little has been done. Enormous benefits await in interactivity,
efficiency, and the comfort and quality of the built environment.
integrated systems >