HISTORY OF SUSTAINABILITY
Sustainable development is the development that meets the requirements of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (WCED: 1987). Foster (2003) states that sustainable architecture can be defined as doing the most with the least means.
In the 1980s after the old government was dissolved, the government building was converted into a hotel and aquarium. The election of a Greater London Authority called for a new government building.
DEVELOPMENT OF SUSTAINABILITY
Sustainability is the principle of seeking to mitigate adverse current and future impacts (Runde and Thoyre: 2010). The quality of surroundings directly influences the quality of lives and this emphasis in the social dimension is an acknowledgment that architecture is generated by peoples’ needs (Foster 2003).
CURRENT FRAMEWORK ON SUSTAINABILITY
The framework of sustainability focuses on economic, social and environmental performances (Salper and Hall: 2011). Kohler (1999) argues that this approach can be applied within the built environment where sustainability refers to investment and maintenance costs to protect the ecosystem and the usage of resources.
The City Hall project was an opportunity to express the values of the newly formed governing body and act as a symbol of change for London. The project brief called for a building to house the Greater London Authority (GLA), which consists of the Mayor, London Assembly and their support staff.
After selecting Foster and Partners to take on the project, the jury, consisting of political and professional representatives, described the desire for a more iconic building form. With this direction in mind, the design team took the sketch that appealed to the jurors and began to reassess the presence of the brief requirements. At this point, volumetric studies were done by manipulating and altering the weight of the brief. As the design sequence progressed, the building began to take the form of a more dynamic shape that was conceptually driven by the detailed brief requirements. Advanced computer modelling techniques helped to create iterative studies of 3D models throughout the design process.
MANUAL OF POLICY
Eco-technic is a process governed by technology thus it is a system that is based on technology with technological advancements. It works that processes occur regulated and policies comply with what lighting type is used, the intensity and temperature policy.
Thus, it is a policy in which the building follows and abides by. This policy is founded by modern technology and modern systems.
SCIENTIFIC ; TECHNOLOGICAL SOLUTIONS
The sciences created in labs allow for things to be controlled and tested technologically. When a problem occurs and something does not work, they send it back to the lab and throw technology to it to solve the problem. Thus measurements and data are imperative because everything is calculated and there are reasons and purposes behind them.
MANAGEMENT OF THE ENVIRONMENT
The management of the area of the building is vital. This entails cultivating flora and planning out the harvesting time effectively.
The design concept of London City Hall’s building form is justified according to two main design criteria that consist of democratic and environmental ideals.
This consists of modernisation. Modernism and sustainability have common grounds. By adopting the legacy of modernism, this indicates that there is a good relationship between the desire to be modern and the imperative to be sustainable (Vandevyvere and Heynen (2014).
This also entails the modernisation of overseas development that has elevated thus some buildings have implemented new technology on water supply compared to old natural systems.
Pollution can also be measured in a building and technology can be used to attend to it and adjust it accordingly.
GLOBAL VIEWPOINT AND ACTION
This entails something that is identified as an issue and is attended to and resolved but has a global impact.
Since the turn of the millennium, a heightened awareness of the world’s environmental issues has surfaced. Studies done around the world have concluded that buildings are responsible for consuming half of the total amount of energy consumed in the developed world. With this rising knowledge, it is apparent that architecture and the incorporation of innovative design strategies have the potential to dramatically influence the earth’s well-being. As technology continues to develop, the ability to explore innovative methods of utilizing alternative and renewable resources comes with greater ease. In addition, the development of advanced digital design tools allows architects to explore environmentally responsible strategies, while simultaneously analysing their success.
Overall, greater access to these innovative design technologies has, and will continue to allow architects to take on a more holistic approach to design, just as Foster and Partners did with London City Hall.
PROCESS OF INNOVATION, INTEGRATING EFFECTS OF DEVELOPMENT
This entails the development of systems on top and allowing it to filter down. Thus, vital decisions like the type of concrete being used are made on the top. By reducing damages and trying to counter act it in other places of design is also a process of integrating the effects of development.
The design for London City Hall was part of a developer-led competition, which asked for submissions according to a design brief that required the promotion of transparency and democracy. In addition to these requirements, Foster and Partners incorporated their own environmental goals for the project. In order to produce an energy-conscious design, architects began to collaborate with engineers, Arup, early on in the design process. Together, Foster and Partners and Arup worked to design the initial London City Hall submission, which took the form of a conventional office block with a debate chamber positioned at the end.
ADVANCEMENT INTO INDUSTRIALISATION
This is a refined process which is getting a good product that is more efficient with the usage of less energy and a decrease in the number of products being used.
After a year of operation, London City Hall was consuming a reported 50% more energy than it had been predicted to consume. Prior to construction, the building was predicted to use 236kWh/sq m, while the recorded consumption in 2003 was 376kWh/sq m. Because the many were persuaded of the building’s form due to its environmental merits, this news was startling to officials. The architect’s hands had an influence. This included the tenant housing more employees in the building than predicted, which created more heat that the cooling loads could compete with. In addition, lights were generally kept on all day, producing extra heat loads.
London City Hall was a ground-breaking office building that implemented sustainable technologies, which had never been entirely incorporated into one London building before. All included technologies, such as borehole cooling, a high performance facade and photovoltaic, will undoubtedly produce less carbon emissions in the end.
By August 2007, a solar photovoltaic system was installed on the roof of London City Hall. Because photovoltaic did not adhere with the initial construction program, special measures were taken to ensure that the roof structure had the ability to be retrofitted with photovoltaic when government funding was available. Benefits of solar photovoltaic include providing clean inexhaustible energy from the sun while producing zero carbon emissions.
TYPICAL PLANNING OF BUILDING
The London City Hall has a unique and specific shape. This reduces the energy through wind, light and glass. The energy efficient lighting, passive solar design and day lighting, the use of natural and mixed mode ventilation, more efficient air conditioning and comfort cooling, combined with the sophisticated energy management systems are all a part of the high tech approach.
Designed to set the standard for environmentally conscious buildings in London, London City Hall incorporates several passive and active design features to achieve its sustainable merit.
Located on the edge of the Thames, London City Hall takes full advantage of its seclusion from traffic noise and fumes. In addition, the building is positioned to receive the fresh air of the Thames and optimize energy performance according to its position on site and orientation to the sun.
The exterior formal moves are derived from the desire to reduce the total glass surface area of the building. In general, a spherical building consumes 25% less energy than cubic building of the same volume. Therefore, the solar heat gain and heat loss through London City Hall’s building envelope is minimized.
Experimental building simulations showed that the energy consumption of an office building could be drastically reduced with the incorporation of thermally efficient cladding. Consequently, the amount of cooling and heating loads would immediately be limited. The building envelope also responds to thermal mapping results, which were derived using three dimensional lighting analyses and a daylight simulation technique. This technique calculated the incident solar radiation by calculated the illuminance for each panel and converting it into a heat gain value. In locations along the facade where the greatest solar impacts occur, the ratio of glazing to cladding is reduced and an operable louver system is used.
The angles of the stepping floor plate overhang on the southern facade are calculated to take advantage of sunlight during winter and provide natural shading during summer. In contrast, along the Northern facade, where direct sun exposure is minimal, the assembly chamber is completely glazed and unshaded. The spherical geometry of the structure required the exact measurements of 654 unique panels that were set at different angles. For the creation of these panels, vector points were individually fixed according to computer coordinates. For each panel of glazing, four vector points were chosen and the planning contractor then created offsets, which allowed a machine to measure and cut the exact size and shape of each panel. Each panel is composed of high-performance solar control glazing, insulated opaque panels and operable vents.
London City Hall’s environmental strategies also begin to incorporate passive control systems that allow the building to operate more efficiently. Amongst these systems are displacement floor grills placed below windows that supply fresh air to the office spaces. Operable vents along the edge of the building also allow for natural ventilation. Displacement ventilation systems are used to cool the committee rooms and debate chamber. During winter, a hygroscopic thermal wheel extracts heat and moisture from the air and is used to preheat the air supply. During the summer, the same system is used to cool the incoming air supply.
Heating and Cooling
Chilled beams along with low-level air supply serve as the main forms of cooling.
Borehole cooling allows cool groundwater to be pumped up from the ground to chillier beams in the ceilings. After cooling the building, the borehole water is recycled and used for flushing toilets. During the winter, mass amounts of heat are lost through the exposed external wall of the chamber. In order to heat the chamber, the diagrid facade structure is used as a large radiator and convector heater. The combination of these energy-saving cooling strategies eliminates the need for mechanical chillies and reduces the annual energy consumption of the building’s mechanical systems by approximately 25% that of a typical office building.
MATERIAL CHOICES AND TREATMENT OF BUILDING
According to Jong-Jin (1998) strategies for a sustainable design entails of a life cycle design with 3 strategies namely; a pre building, the building and a post building. The pre building uses materials that are made of renewable resources, harvested without ecological damage, long lasting and low maintenance and minimising energy used to distribute materials. The building schedules construction to minimise site impact, provide waste separation facilities, usage of non-toxic materials and to specify regular maintenance. The post building adapts existing structures to new users and programs.
CONSTRUCTION DETAILS OF BUIDLING
The idealised concept of the place is the integration of global environmental concerns into conventional building design strategies. Thus it is an urban vision of the compact and dense city.
City Hall begins to respond to the necessity for democracy by drawing the public in with its iconic building form. The ground level consists of a sunken outdoor amphitheatre that draws the public into an underground cafe and exhibition space located directly beneath the assembly chamber. The central winding allows patrons to symbolically ascend through all ten stories of the building and above the debate chamber of their elected representatives. The ramp eventually leads past the mayor’s office to what is known as “London’s Living Room”. This space provides an excellent exhibition space with its naturally lit spaces, as well as an outdoor terrace that can accommodate up to 200 guests.
The transparent glass exterior allows the citizens of London to feel like they are a greater part of their governing body. The transparent facade allows Londoners to see directly into the operating chamber, symbolizing an open system of government. This idea is enhanced by the building’s views over the Thames River, Tower Bridge and cityscape abroad that serve as a reminder of London’s role as a historically rooted and ever developing world-class city. The chamber also contains 250 seats for public and press viewing of the GLA’s meetings and debates. Along with the democratic concept, the working atmosphere created inside of the building is admittedly not the spacious office type found in a luxurious office building. Instead, the inside is more of a local-government style office, where the workspace is pushed to the centre and open plan areas line the perimeter.
REFLECTION ON RESEARCH CONDUCTED
Architecture is both an interior and exterior experience. The best architecture comes from a synthesis of all of the elements that separately comprise a building, from its relationship to the streetscape or skyline to the structure that holds it up; the services that allow it to work; the ecology of the building; the materials used; the character of the spaces; the use of light and shade; the symbolism of the form; and the way in which it signals its presence in the city or the countryside. I think that holds true whether you are creating a landmark or deferring to a historical setting. Successful, sustainable architecture addresses all these things and many more.
Standing monumentally the development, London City Hall, successfully uses innovative practices to declare itself visibly and functionally as a technologically ground breaking building. With Foster and Partners’ holistic design approach, the architects were able to deliver not only a transparent and democratic building, but a building that incorporated the most ground breaking and sustainable technologies of its time.
Today, the building stands proudly, with success radiating visibly from its transparent facade and literally from its functioning chillier beams. Marked by its success, London City Hall will continue to act as a role model and precedent for many iconic, environmentally responsible buildings to come.