“Architecture” isn’t only for museums, corporations, or the wealthy. Whether you are remodeling the kitchen, creating your dream home, sitting on the building committee for a new school or civic center, or planning a commercial or other building, working with an architect member of the AIA can save time and money by making your new spaces more functional, comfortable, efficient, and environmentally responsible. Architects can play a pivotal role in reducing the overall environmental impact and energy needed to create and operate buildings, the single biggest consumer of fossil fuels. The result is a project that is beautiful, distinctive, efficient, and healthy for us and the planet.
Knowing how to work with your architect will enable you to get the most from this special collaboration. You and Your Architect can help you to do so—personally, professionally, creatively, and sustainably.
• Maximization of site potential
• Reduction of non-renewable energy consumption
• Conservation of water
• Reduction of waste
• Use of environmentally friendly products
• Improvement of indoor environmental quality
Using sustainable design strategies may be as simple as using recycled, non-toxic materials or may involve a more comprehensive program incorporating such elements as green roofs, photovoltaic cells that capture sunlight, and air and water treatment systems. Although many firms are generally familiar with green design, you will want to question prospective architects closely about their level of experience in this regard and examine past projects that incorporated sustainable strategies. (For more information, visit www.aia.org/walkthewalk and the U.S. Green Building Council at www.usgbc.org.)