To create a truly green build when constructing a house or any type of building, a keen green designer or sustainable architect will spend time studying the land that the construction will take place on.
This is to assess the ecology of the local landscape, and in a nutshell, to make sure that the building fits in with the local landscape, and does not radically alter or affect it. Even if a potential new green build is to be squeezed in between two existing properties, a good architect will still study the existing features of the land and be trying to incorporate these into the design that they come up with, and go on to build.
Using Land Effectively and Greenly
Every piece of land, whether it is a green field or a brown field site, has its own unique ecological system. Are there trees on the site where the potential construction will take place? Is the site concreted over, or does it contain piles of building rubble and concrete? Is it shaded, overlooked, or in direct sunlight? Is there a great view that should be taken into account when designing, or are there features which the build would do well not to overlook? Is the site a wildlife haven? Might there be some protected plants or animals that live there and need to be worked around? These are the sorts of questions that a green designer should be thinking when they assess a site for a potential new green build. Perhaps there are materials locally that could be incorporated into the construction – these might be trees, or a local wood yard or quarry that can supply local materials.
Being sustainable is at the core of green building. This means really using materials that are available locally, not shipping in slate from Spain, or oak wood from Turkey, or marble from Italy. Green building doesn’t say that these materials are wrong, but that to be a low carbon construction is a major aim, and that using local materials, and local workers and craftsmen, supports the local economy and maintains a harmonious local ecology. This is part of a movement that also aims to strengthen local communities, and really encourage people to belong to the area that they live in. Building a green build that is truly of the land it stands upon is a strong part of that ethos, and creates green buildings and green communities that those who live and work in them can be proud of.
Caring for the Land
Caring for the land that is to be built upon should be as natural as caring for a family member, a child, or a pet. Caring for the environment and for the planet is more than just a slogan, it is an integral part of life that should be at the core of every decision we made.
This is why care and patient, considered assessment needs to be taken when evaluating a piece of land as a site for a potential new build. To bring forth a green build out from the land itself is an art, but with care and patience this can be done, and a new construction made that is a truly green build: somewhere that is of the land it stands on, and that truly belongs there, in harmony with the surrounding natural environment.