- "Superarchitecture: Daylight for Sustainability and Health" by Terri Peters
"Superarchitecture: Daylight for Sustainability and Health" by Terri Peters
University of Toronto
Lecture from the 7th VELUX Daylight Symposium “Healthy & climate-friendly architecture– from knowledge to practice” that took place in Berlin on 3-4 May 2017. For more information visit http://thedaylightsite.com
One of the most significant challenges in architectural research and practice is how to better define and evaluate sustainability to make better environments for people. Often, this has meant ‘green architecture’ focused on resource use and comparisons to benchmark buildings, but increasingly a more holistic approach and new metrics for evaluating sustainable buildings including ‘social sustainability’ are gaining influence.
Daylight offers unique potentials as a design driver for the human dimensions of sustainability because it plays a central role in architectural experience, human health and wellbeing, and energy savings. Research has shown that buildings have the power to enhance people’s health and emotional wellbeing, encourage physical activity, and help people be happier and more productive. This talk focuses on daylight as a critical design parameter for human experience and wellbeing, drawing on the speaker’s recent journal issue on architecture’s role as the link between environmentally sustainable design and health promoting environments.
This talk introduces the concept of superarchitecture, which are buildings that go beyond reducing energy use or mitigating the impacts of climate change to offer positive co-benefits of improved health and wellness for occupants, better environmental performance, and enriched architectural design such as innovative spatial experiences, enhanced community benefits, and additional amenities. The talk presents evidence and recently built examples of superarchitecture that use daylight not only to make the environment better, but to make people better for being in them.
Examples include emotionally supportive spaces designed by Canadian office MGA where daylight is used to promote a sense of home and comfort, Australian studio Lyons’s exuberant designs for multi-sensory architecture where daylight and green spaces create welcoming and playful spaces, and the focus on daylit, passive design strategies incorporating local fabrication methods by MASS Design Group. Terri Peters is a Post-Doctoral Researcher at University of Toronto in Canada. Her research concentrates on sustainable architecture, in particular the human experience of green buildings including cultural and architectural qualities, health and wellbeing, and new design tools for measuring and evaluating building performance.
She is the editor of Architectural Design journal “Design For Health: Sustainable Approaches to Therapeutic Architecture” (March 2017) and author of Computing the Environment: Digital Design Tools for the Simulation and Visualisation of Sustainable Architecture (In Press, John Wiley and Sons). She holds a professional degree in architecture and is a registered architect in the UK where she worked professionally before undertaking her PhD. She earned a PhD from Aarhus Architecture School in Denmark in 2015. Presentation from 7th VELUX Daylight Symposium, for more information please visit http://thedaylightsite.com.