Gallery: Green Design Predictions For 2011!
Lloyd Alter - Architecture and Design Writer, Treehugger.com
I used to be a modernist; it is what I tried to do as an architect and a builder. Then I became an environmentalist, being appalled at how badly all our new glass towers perform. Now I am a heritage activist, convinced that our older buildings, towns and cities can teach us how to live a low energy lifestyle, like everybody did before there was cheap oil, cheap electricity and an automobile based culture.
This year, I finally think the message will get through that transportation efficiency trumps building efficiency; that where you live and work affects your carbon footprint a lot more than what you live and work in. That simple, resilient and flexible systems are better than green gizmos. That bikes will save us, not Teslas and Leafs.
Jane Jacobs said “Old ideas can sometimes use new buildings. New ideas must use old buildings.” This year I hope to see a lot of great renovation, restoration, repurposing and reuse. I am not certain that we need a lot of new shiny baubles right now.