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Myth 01: Green Architecture is Ugly

The first in an on-going series of Myths + facts

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Click the image above to see more examples.

The images in the slideshow above prove that sustainable architecture may have certain performance objectives in common, but they certainly do not fall into a "style", This is an outdated myth. Note the contrast with early examples such as the earth ship. 

There is a usual assumption that green/sustainable low carbon buildings often result in architecture that is awkward and unattractive, while others may fear that the green aesthetic won’t fit with its neighbours. The notion that high performance buildings necessariliy have an aesthetic is reflective of the early ‘geen’ buildings construced in the seventies and onward. While this may have been true of early experiments in sustainable design, it certainly is not true of modern sustainable buildings. These modern structures excel in utilizing natural light, natural ventilation, thermal comfort, while providing very human livable spaces. It will come to pass that sustainability will be a prerequisite for any design to truly be good design.

Ultimately, there are a lot of sexy sustainable buildings being constructed now. The more architects take these technologies seriously, the more beautiful high performance buildings will be built. This starts by knowing the difference between greenwash and sustainable buildings. As sustainable architecture gains more of a foothold in the day to day thinking of designers, the greater the imperative will to design them beautifully at the same time rather than green washing “good design” after the fact to make it appear sustainable.