Green Architecture Has Intangible Benefits
A recent report in the Canadian Globe and Mail, takes the view that business buildings designed with environmentally sensitive goals in mind have "unexpected" advantages to owners and the general public. These advantages include energy savings but also intangible things like: a better workplace, increased productivity and lower vacancy rates.
They example they give is a new building federal goverment building in Charlottetown on Prince Edward Island. It is being erected by Public Works and Government Services Canada, and it is one of the earliest projects in the country being designed with a high LEED Canada certification. The process of design led to some innovative thinking. The building has two wings, one L-shaped and brick, the other clad in sandstone. Both wrap around a large central atrium. Richard Williams, one designers said "We chose to make the atrium an active part of the work environment." In-floor venting will carry stale air to the atrium, where it will then be released through the roof, using natural convection currents. This will decrease demands on the building's air conditioning system, allowing cooling to be achieved using a chilled concrete slab floor.
[by Justin Thomas]