High-tech building materials may be all the rage, but ancient materials can be just as effective at creating energy-efficient and environmentally sensitive buildings. Case in point: David Marchetti Architetto has designed a office building for Leeds, UK that features a modern façade formed from rammed earth. The project employs a variety of passive design principles and also harvests solar energy to help run the building’s electrical and cooling systems. The result is a building built-to-last that showcases the best of passive and active green building strategies.
Davide Marchetti Architetto‘s 36 Calls project updates an ancient building material with a modern form that makes a lot of sense. In this application rammed earth walls offer the benefits of insulating thermal mass and solar shading, while the façade’s punctured portholes allow daylight and air to filter in, significantly reducing the office’s energy use.
The building’s interior is carefully considered as well — interior spaces are designed without VOCs and are naturally ventilated, ensuring good air quality. A ground air exchange reduces energy consumption from heating and cooling, and passive microclimate design further reduces the building’s energy needs.
Unfortunately Davide Marchetti Architetto‘s green office did not make the final cut in the 36 Calls Design Competition but we’re glad to see architects exploring modern forms for durable, eco-friendly building materials.