A book about architecture’s new place.
Download chapter [Germany Maintains]
By Andrew Michler
The promise of environmental architecture is here. An expansive pattern is emerging where the most innovative of contemporary buildings are a response to place. Instead of overcoming nature and supplanting cultural acumen, these visionary projects embrace the complex intertwining of the site, people and environment. Explore firsthand how Spain Wraps commercial buildings, Japan Condenses micro homes and Australia Unfolds aggressive design solutions in a climate of extremes. Journey to Cascadia, Germany, Denmark, and Mexico to witness the progressing manifestation of environmental values and human conditions through provocative design. This groundbreaking exploration offers an unprecedented insight into architecture’s new place in a changing climate with dozens of illuminating and often surprising conversations with some of the most renowned sustainable architects of our time. Includes access to the online living index.
“the book ‘[ours] hyperlocalization of architecture’ can be seen as a contemporary experimental guide for the future designers and produces different approaches to ‘ordinary architecture’ with regional sources or materials. in this regard, defines a new way of producing through provocative rules and limitations, removing all ambiguity about sustainable architecture.
when his (Michler) research studies and experimental works are put under the scope, it seems that he is exactly the right person to write this book.”
“In his forthcoming book, Hyperlocalization of Architecture, author and Passive House consultant Andrew Michler turns his lens to contemporary architecture, but his focus is on a very timeless concept.”
” I recommend it to anyone who wants a richer understanding of what’s going on, globally, in architecture. Michler’s book is full of wonderful revelations. The real strength of the book is in its curatorial sense of adventure… What Michler’s book finally shows us is that the world of architecture is pluralistic and dispersed, and it’s at the beginning of a really important revolution; this is really exciting stuff.”
“This gorgeous book is an impressive collection of the greenest and most beautiful buildings in the world. Michler’s keen analysis provides a new insight into each design in a way that illuminates the design lessons hidden within. By pulling together these incredible projects and renowned architects, this book provides the inspiration you’ll need to pursue deep sustainability in your own projects.”
– Eric Corey Freed
Architect & Author of 11 books
Vice President, International Living Future Institute & the Cascadia Green Building Council
“[ours] Hyperlocalization of Architecture brilliantly delves into contexts and operations which is what an architecture of sustainability is made up of. Reflecting on design, not flair, Michler perfectly inhabits design -if we redefine the word to indicate logic engaging with the environment. In so doing, he generates new powerful classifications of ‘locale’.”
– Mitchell Joachim
Professor NYU and Co-Founder, Terreform ONE
Author of The Solar House
Associate Professor of Architectural Engineering at the University of Wyoming
“Hyperlocalization of Architecture is a new, fresh and uber-contextual book.”
– World Architecture Community
The Danish take the proverb “half the fun is getting there” very seriously. The bike infrastructure is thriving not just for convenience but also because people genuinely enjoy taking a bike ride as a part of their daily work and social life. Movement and architecture can go very well together. Salted with a strong sense of environmental and cultural values, you have the backdrop for 8 Tallet (8 House), which at 61,000 square meters is Copenhagen’s largest building.
Rather than incrementally implementing changes to afford efficiency gains, as is typical in the conservative world of construction, the grassroots movement of Passivhaus has approaches the consumption of energy from the opposite side of the spectrum. The Germanic quality of intensely focusing on the core stringent efficiency goals has opened up a spectrum of new building typographies that excel in quality and energy miserliness.Design a building’s shell that steeply reduces energy use to the point that its savings in ongoing operating costs justifies the added expense of the envelope over the life of the project.
Embedded architecture is not about hiding buildings, but about better integrating them to the human scale. Since you still need to provide light and egress it means the architecture is an insertion, rather than an act of camouflage. The need for public green spaces and infrastructure merge elegantly with underground architecture. Embedded architecture can be a kind of radical form of enhanced land use. By inserting program below, the surface is allowed to facilitate public good.
The Pacific Northwest region, roughly from British Columbia to Oregon, is often referred to as Cascadia and has a distinctive socio-environmental ethic that provides the perfect template to explore and express the potential of heavy timber construction on a large scale. The conversation pivots from sustainability to adaptability by re-localizing the materiality of buildings. In 30 years, or perhaps much sooner, a wooden skyscraper will be commonplace. Buildings, then cities, made out of wood become our carbon bank.
By embracing an extended living space into the public realm, the need for private space is generously reduced. This greater-built environment subsidizes the privately-designed environment, allowing a family to live with less space but enjoy a contemporary lifestyle. Since privacy has not historically been a design priority in Japan, a home’s interior is given great freedom to explore space making. By opening up the small volumes, architects can incorporate ingenious ways to design interiors visually, functionally, and psychologically larger than they would seem capable of.
The expressive nature of wrapping is an antidote to shape making for its own sake. The formulation of these projects is in the service to the sun, which by nature starts with site. Solar control is also about coaxing gentle daylight deep into a space. These are the real solar-powered buildings. Design dialog then can commence with an inventive palette of materials, shapes, and expressions, allowing contemporary architectural expression to acclimatize to its place. Perhaps this is why Spanish architecture in particular is so well-versed in solar control. In a place of sun, these buildings navigate light like a mariner crosses the sea.
The mix of complex culture and unique land is fertile for architecture to assertively pursue high performance and reformulate aesthetic values. Unfolding architecture is a fundamental expression of purpose in the form of an articulated gesture, which manifests in multiple formal and conceptual ways. All of these buildings explore an experimentation that pursues both performance and culture with active design intent, environmentally rooted and expressed as a bold playfulness. Being on the edge requires a resolute and at times aggressive effort, which creates fertile ground for experimentation and leadership. Understanding Australia’s architecture is about accepting the union of opposites.Published by
Foreword by Lloyd Alter
Interviews and Projects by:
William McDonough + Partners
Berta Barrio Arquitectos
Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp.
Andrew Maynard Architects
Kavellaris Urban Design
Lederer + Ragnarsdottir + Oei
Casey Brown Architecture
Peter Busby Perkins+Will
Dr. Wolfgang Feist
MHN Design Union
Durbach Block Jagger
Ramón Fernández-Alonso Arquitect
“If we had trees that made zero emissions we are all dead. Why wouldn’t you want buildings like trees? When you think of it like that then it’s rather obvious. This is all based on human creativity, and the ability for us to advance and continuously improve with freedom from the remote tyranny of bad design. Why should I be tyrannized about yesterday’s bad decision? It’s much more fun to improvise, constantly. That’s why the cultural question becomes interesting because at that point the culture can express itself in a creative way. It still has integrity because you’re expressing yourself creatively within a context. You’re solving for rich, local problems. All sustainability, like politics is local. It has to be.” – William McDonough in [ours]
Groundbreaking architecture theory
Online project index with multimedia
The Institute for the Built Environment assisted in site selection and research.
About eVolo Press: eVolo is host of the annual Skyscraper Competition, one of the world’s most prestigious awards for conceptual architecture. eVolo Magazine focuses on the world’s most innovative architecture ideas and projects with an emphasis on parametric design. eVolo Publishing produces art quality books on contemporary architecture theory and design.
Website is hosted by GreenGeeks who upcycle 3X the consumed server energy with wind power. All photos © eVolo Press unless otherwise noted.