Technology is evolving to enable more sustainable design says Pete Baxter, sales director, Northern Europe, Autodesk Building Solutions
Architectural software is entering a third age. We’ve seen the move from drawing board to desktop with the introduction of automated drafting. We’ve witnessed the 2D to 3D
evolution and the growing use of building information modelling (BIM) strategies.
But, if architects are to meet the challenges of the 21st century – the most pressing being environmental concerns and the need for more sustainable buildings and communities – they need to look at buildings holistically. They need to move beyond static designs and consider how a building will behave over time.
Architects can play a key role in protecting our finite resources. Estimates suggest that buildings consume between a 33 – 50% of the world’s energy and that approximately 80% of environmental costs are predetermined during the product concept and specification stage.
Now the technology is available to integrate all aspects of a building – including structural and services - into one digital model that gives information about its behaviour as well as its physical structure early on in the design process.
This gives architects vital data to make fundamental decisions about a design. It enables them to test and
evaluate different options that affect sustainability – for example, concerning energy and water efficiency, use of daylight and air quality.
It’s an exciting development that has big implications. Giving architects the tools for this precise analysis will help create buildings that perform efficiently – not just now, but for future generations too.
Editorial , London
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