Efficiency in design is a basic need of an architectural response to any brief. As architects, we must deliver projects that are safe, cost-effective to use, maintain and service and that reduce negative impacts on the environment (RIBA Professional Code of Conduct, 2019). Efficient designs take less time to deliver, occupy less space, require less investment, and use fewer resources to create. Therefore, efficiency in architectural design is an issue closely connected with sustainability.
We follow the RIBA Plan of Work. This is the definitive UK model for the building design and construction process and now includes Sustainability Checkpoints. Our bespoke RIBA Checklists have incorporated the Sustainability Checkpoints, linking sustainability into our quality processes.
Gaunt Francis Architects also operates an ISO14001:2015 accredited environmental management system. Combined with our knowledge and experience in sustainable design, this means we have the skills and systems to deliver efficient designs.
We understand BREEAM standards. For example, we have recently carried out a feasibility design for a housing scheme in Cambridge which we designed to BREEAM “Excellent”. The new Parkgate Hotel in Cardiff achieved BREEAM “Very Good”.
GFA designed and delivered the GreenHouse, the first Code 6 Home built by a national housebuilder in the UK, after winning the 2007 Home for the Future Design Award. Barrat built the GreenHouse at the BRE Innovation Park in 2008.
Despite our credentials and track-record we are continuously learning and developing. We currently have two senior staff qualified as PassivHaus Designers, certified by the PassivHaus Institute in Germany, to further help us to support our clients’ sustainability agenda.
To achieve efficiency in design, we advocate developing a project Sustainability Strategy at the earliest stage possible. We have also developed a “Sustainability Toolkit” that we use to introduce clients to sustainable design concepts. Click on the link below.