|Brooks+Scarpa - Cherokee Studio in Los Angeles, CA|
|Wednesday, 11 May 2011 09:03|
As promised when we introduced the winners of the 2011 COTE Top Ten Green Projects by the American Institute of Architects, we will be posting individual stories about each project. The projects have already been featured in more details on AIA’s web site.
We start with by Brooks+Scarpa’s Cherokee Studio in LA, an urban infill, mixed-use, market-rate housing project designed to incorporate green design as a way of marketing a green lifestyle. The project is pending LEED Platinum certification. The design maximizes the opportunities of the mild Southern California climate with a passive cooling strategy using cross-ventilation and thermal convection while taking advantage of the abundantly sunny location. A commitment to minimizing the project's ecological footprint informed all aspects of the design.
The main architectural feature of this project is the building's owner-controlled double-façade system. The occupant is able to adjust the operable screens of the building façade as necessary for privacy, views, shading, and thermal comfort. As a result, the facade is virtually redesigned "live" from within, responding to the occupants of the building in real time. The façade also enhances the existing streetscape and promotes a lively pedestrian environment. By visually breaking up the façade into smaller, articulated moving elements, the building appears to move with the passing cars and people. Like many features of the building, the façade is multivalent and rich with meaning, performing several roles for formal, functional, and experiential effect.
A early design decision to make the units smaller than normal allowed the client to serve a more diverse population and include retail space on the street level while increasing density. This also included an analysis that would conserve building resources, saving time and money.
During the planning stages, numerous environmental considerations were incorporated within the project. The architects and energy consultant collaborated from the outset to minimize energy use and utilize natural features such as the sun and prevailing winds. Engineering design criteria and over-conservative engineering factors were analyzed to reduce "over-designing" the building and therefore wasting precious material. This alone saves miles of electrical wiring, thousands of feet of plumbing pipe, and tons of steel reinforcing and concrete.
Land Use & Community
The building is at the crossroads of Fairfax Boulevard and the famous Melrose Avenue and within a half mile of the Sunset Strip and many other popular cultural and entertainment attractions. The location ranks a “Walker’s Paradise” on Walkscore.com (95 out of 100) because of its proximity to restaurants and entertainment, schools, shopping, grocery stores, and other essentials.
The passive strategies alone make this building nearly 50% more efficient than similar conventionally designed structures.
The perforated aluminum panels of the building create an ever-changing screen, providing shade to cool the building, reducing noise, and enhancing privacy while still allowing for spectacular views, natural light, and ventilation from ocean breezes that pass through its millions of perforations even when all panels are fully closed.
The project was designed to significantly reduce operation and maintenance costs. An O&M program has been designed, and an operation manual has been provided to the owner. All systems are currently being monitored for performance. It is important to coordinate rebate requirements with actual product and installation warranties.
Materials such as formaldehyde-free fiberboard, concrete, natural stone, and natural solid woods were used. Material with natural finishes throughout the thickness of the material were specified so that when the material suffers from abuse, it shows less wear and therefore lasts longer.
Recycled and locally procured materials were preferred and used throughout. Interior finishes were selected for their high levels of recycled content, low chemical emissions, and use of rapidly renewable materials.
The building has facilities to sort, collect, and recycle paper, plastic and metal products. Because of the very low power demand of the building, thousands of feet of wire were saved.
100% of storm water is captured on site. Most of the water is captured by the green roof and is returned to the groundwater after being cleaned of pollutants. All other storm water is collected in a subsurface infiltration system.
The most important climatic issue to address for a building in this climate is mild heating in the winter. Air conditioning is generally not needed, but it is important to have good passive solar orientation and shading to take advantage of natural ventilation. The breezes from the coast, from the southwest and northwest, are fairly constant and predictable. On most days, passive natural ventilation will provide sufficient cooling for the residential spaces. The building is designed with a private exterior courtyard to induce airflow and provide maximum natural light and privacy.
The building’s exterior metal screens function as a light filter and shading device but also play a very important role in creating a much-needed sense of visual and acoustic privacy for its location in a dense urban environment. Like many of the features of this project, they perform several roles for functional, formal, and experiential effect. 100% of the regularly occupied building area is daylit and can be ventilated with operable windows.
Project Credits :
Architecture: BROOKS + SCARPA (formerly Pugh + Scarpa) Santa Monica, California
|Last Updated on Tuesday, 24 May 2011 16:33|