Architectural Lifecycle Planning: Sustainability Through Longevity


Mitchell Gray

ARCH 549

Architecture is imbued with a natalist fixation that causes designers to situate their buildings in the static world of the present with no considerations for the dynamic world of the future they will actually live in. This project is a response to the contradictory trends toward both limiting energy consumption and constructing a disposable building stock. Architects can minimize environmental impact by considering the effect that details, materials selection, and building systems have on initial resource consumption, longevity, adaptability, and recyclability. This project seeks to exemplify a working methodology for architects to ‘future proof’ their buildings. In this mixed-use development, each piece of program operates on a different timescale. Housing, amenity, and academic spaces are projected to have different future requirements and therefore each strikes a different balance between strength and adaptability. Not only is building longevity good for the environment, it also provides value to owners for much longer and can offset the impact of demolition and new construction where a typical building would no longer meet their needs.