Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 9


FEATURE

H

2016 in review

ealth and wellness emerges as a theme when looking

product declarations (HPDs) in the September issue contin-

back at Commercial Architecture's feature articles

ued the focus on how the built environment contributes to

for 2016. Integration of biophilia, which emphasiz-

the health and safety of building occupants.

es myriad connections to the natural world, started off the

Environment is a key word, as the acoustics article in No-

year. The changing role of libraries as community resources

vember emphasized how the impact of environmental dis-

followed in March.

tractions might affect health and productivity.

Green schools, the subject of our June feature, are a

In the following pages, we'll recap some of the observa-

sought-after goal in many communities, not only as a cost-

tions about the impact on the health and wellness of the built

and energy-saving measure, but as a perceived more-healthful

environment and provide highlights of some of the thoughts

environment for students.

shared with us by experts.

Similarly, in July/August, the changing face of cities such

But it's not just about looking backward. These are themes

as Detroit reflects the New Urbanism movement toward

and concerns that have developed over time and will surely

move livable, walkable, and healthy communities.

continue to be areas of relevance and advancement in build-

Environmental product declarations (EPDs) and health

ing practice and design. CA

Back To Nature
B

iophilia is a more formal and inclusive term for what architects,

even further, identifying the most compelling features for commercial

builders, and owners have been instinctively doing for a long

architecture.

time-letting daylight in, using natural materials and designs, and
incorporating greenery.

Their white paper, "14 Patterns of Biophilic Design," identified the
patterns of nature with the most qualitative and quantitative research

Of course, biophilia is a great deal more complex than the

documenting their positive influence on our psycho-physiology. These

foregoing simple description. Perhaps because of its origins in

fourteen elements are classified under the three main categories of

the academic fields of psychology and sociology, the term is still

biophilic design:

somewhat unfamiliar in the business world of construction, evidence-

*	

nature in the space

based design, and cost management. But that is changing. There is

*	

nature analogues

a growing body of research that quantifies the benefits of biophilic

*	

nature of the space.

design, not to mention that the green movement and the well-building

Nature in space, for example, encompasses not just the obvious

concept have acknowledged the importance of a connection to

visual connection to nature but non-visual cues as well, such as

nature in their philosophies. The importance of daylight, plants, water,

auditory, haptic, olfactory, or gustatory stimuli. Thermal and airflow

and materials is evident in the evolution of healthcare design, as well

variability, the presence of water, varying intensities of light and

as the design of other aspects of the built environment, from office

shadow that mimic natural patterns, and an awareness of natural

buildings to city planning. It just may not have been called biophilic

processes are additional elements of nature in space.

design.
"The terms biophilia or biophilic design are not common in
the industry yet, perhaps because they encompass a larger set of

Finally, the nature of the space is important. View, or prospect,
is significant, but so is a sense of refuge. The promise of more
information, or mystery, is another attribute of the nature of space.

possible design interventions," agreed Catie Ryan, senior project

Using real materials from nature is preferred by some designers,

manager at Terrapin Bright Green, a sustainability-consulting and

but David Navarrete, director, research initiatives, The Sky Factory,

strategic-planning firm based in New York, and co-author of 14

Fairfield, IA, makes a case for nature analogues. "It depends on the

Patterns of Biophilic Design.

attribute and the context of its use. It is possible to provide an indirect

Biophilic design is a more complex and far reaching than a

connection with nature by mimicking materials, colors, shapes,

window and a potted plant in the lobby. Dr. Stephen R. Kellert,

or sequences. In the core of deep-plan buildings, where it is not

professor emeritus of Social Ecology at Yale Univ. and co-editor of the

structurally possible to create a visual connection to the exterior, it

seminal book Biophilic Design (2008), identified 71 attributes of natural

is possible to provide a visual and spatially sound experience of open

environments that have restorative benefits when incorporated into

space using biophilic illusions that engage areas of the brain involved

the built environment. Terrapin Bright Green distilled these attributes

in spatial cognition," he said.

There is a growing body of research that quantifies the benefits of biophilic design, and the green movement and the well-building concept have acknowledged
the importance of connections to nature. Architect: Gould Turner Group / Photographer: Terry Wier Photography

commercialarchitecturemagazine.com

DECEMBER 2016

COMMERCI A L A RCHI T EC T URE

9


http://www.gouldturner.com/ http://www.terrywier.com/ http://www.commercialarchitecturemagazine.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Commercial Architecture December 2016

The Architects
Building Focus: 2016 In Review
Retrofit Surpasses Expectations
HVAC Solution Drives Sustainability
HVAC & Plumbing Products Of The Year
Wall System Aligns With University's Style
Exteriors Products Of The Year
Glazing System Presents Smooth, Monolithic Appearance
Windows & Doors Products Of The Year
Ceilings Quietly Contribute To Employee Comfort
A Model For Sustainable Reuse
Interiors Products Of The Year
Skyline Garage Lives Up To Name
Lighting & Electrical Products Of The Year
Building Technology Products Of The Year
Showcase
Index
Portfolio
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Cover1
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Cover2
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 1
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 2
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 3
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 4
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 5
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - The Architects
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 7
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 9
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Building Focus: 2016 In Review
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 10
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 11
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 12
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 13
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Retrofit Surpasses Expectations
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 15
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 16
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 19
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - HVAC Solution Drives Sustainability
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 21
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - HVAC & Plumbing Products Of The Year
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 23
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 24
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 25
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 26
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Wall System Aligns With University's Style
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 28
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Exteriors Products Of The Year
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 30
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Windows & Doors Products Of The Year
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 32
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 33
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 34
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Ceilings Quietly Contribute To Employee Comfort
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 36
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - A Model For Sustainable Reuse
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 38
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Interiors Products Of The Year
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 40
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 41
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Skyline Garage Lives Up To Name
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 43
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Lighting & Electrical Products Of The Year
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 45
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Building Technology Products Of The Year
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - 47
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Showcase
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Index
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Portfolio
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Cover3
Commercial Architecture December 2016 - Cover4
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