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Cork

8 Biodegradable Materials the Construction Industry Needs to Know About

09:30 - 2 May, 2018
8 Biodegradable Materials the Construction Industry Needs to Know About

In architecture we are so caught up in creating something new, we often forget about what happens at the end of a building’s life cycle—the unfortunate, inevitable demolition. We may want our buildings to be timeless and live on forever, but the harsh reality is that they do not, so where is all the waste expected to go?

As with most non-recyclable waste, it ends up in the landfill and, as the land required for landfill becomes an increasingly scarce resource, we must find an alternative solution. Each year in the UK alone, 70–105 million tonnes of waste is created from demolishing buildings, and only 20% of that is biodegradable according to a study by Cardiff University. With clever design and a better awareness of the biodegradable materials available in construction, it’s up to us as architects to make the right decisions for the entirety of a building’s lifetime.

8 Common Materials You May Not Have Realized Are Sustainable

09:30 - 26 December, 2017
8 Common Materials You May Not Have Realized Are Sustainable

Sustainability. A word that, for many of us, has been driven into our minds from the very start of our careers as architects. We have a responsibility to the planet and future generations to design buildings that are socially conscious—from solar panels to triple-glazed windows, we have tried it all.

Ultimately, whether our designs are sustainable comes down to the early decisions we make for the building, with our choice of materials having a huge effect on the overall carbon footprint. With new technologies come new ways of incorporating abundantly found materials into the skin of the building that could reduce the building's embodied energy and enhance the structure's properties.

In this article, we have compiled a list of 8 familiar materials that you wouldn't initially associate with sustainability but which you might consider for your next design.

Could Cork Be Nature’s Answer to Our Environmental and Construction Needs?

09:30 - 16 December, 2017
Could Cork Be Nature’s Answer to Our Environmental and Construction Needs? , © Wai Ming Ng
© Wai Ming Ng

Unbeknown to many, cork is something of a dark horse when it comes to the environment—a model of a sustainable industry and building material. By its very nature, cork is both recyclable and renewable, as it is the only tree that regenerates its bark, while harvesting that bark causes the tree no harm.

Cork has been sneaking its way into our buildings for many years now; due to its hard-wearing properties it can be found, for example, in the checkerboard flooring of the Library of Congress. Even NASA has been wise to cork's light weight and insulation capacity, using it as an insulator for their space shuttles.

Morrison’s Island International Design Competition

11:47 - 18 July, 2017
Morrison’s Island International Design Competition, THE MORRISON’S ISLAND INTERNATIONAL DESIGN COMPETITION, CORK, IRELAND
THE MORRISON’S ISLAND INTERNATIONAL DESIGN COMPETITION, CORK, IRELAND

Entries are now open for the Morrison's Island International Design Competition, Cork, Ireland

Registered architects, landscape architects and engineers are invited to take part in a design competition to propose innovative and considered solutions for the renewal of Cork city’s quayside landscape. Participants are encouraged to collaborate with other professional disciplines, historians, craftspeople and artists. The competition aims to explore the authentic spatial and material quality of the city that has been lost in recent times and engage with the remaining historic fabric.

AD Classics: Glucksman Gallery / O’Donnell + Tuomey

10:30 - 16 September, 2016
AD Classics: Glucksman Gallery / O’Donnell + Tuomey, © Alice Clancy
© Alice Clancy

“The annals say: when the monks of Clonmacnoise / Were all at prayers inside the oratory / A ship appeared above them in the air. / The anchor dragged along behind so deep / It hooked itself into the altar rails.”[1]

These words by Irish poet Seamus Heaney have had a profound impact on the work of architects Sheila O’Donnell and John Tuomey, who cited the poem as one of their inspirations for the Glucksman Gallery – an exhibition space commissioned by the University of Cork in the early millennium. Named for its patron Lewis Glucksman (a Wall Street trader and philanthropist), the Glucksman Gallery was completed in 2005 and nominated for the Stirling Prize that same year. Thanks to its outstanding site-specific design, the building has since become one of the most celebrated works of contemporary Irish architecture.

© Alice Clancy © Alice Clancy © Alice Clancy © Alice Clancy + 22

O'Donnell + Tuomey Selected to Design Student Hub for Cork University

00:00 - 5 January, 2015
O'Donnell + Tuomey Selected to Design Student Hub for Cork University, University College Cork's main quadrangle. Image © Flickr CC user Meg Marks
University College Cork's main quadrangle. Image © Flickr CC user Meg Marks

University College Cork has selected O'Donnell + Tuomey to design the university's new student hub, which will house learning, student support and administration spaces in a new building adjacent to the campus' Victorian Windle Medical Building, to the West of the main quadrangle. Selected for their ability to work within and around the historic buildings, the project will also see O'Donnell + Tuomey restore the medical building.

The new student centre will be the second building designed by the practice for University College Cork, a decade after the completion of their Stirling Prize-shortlisted Lewis Glucksman Gallery.

House at Goleen / Níall McLaughlin Architects

00:00 - 23 December, 2012
House at Goleen / Níall McLaughlin Architects, © Nick Guttridge
© Nick Guttridge

© Nick Guttridge  © Nick Guttridge  © Nick Guttridge  © Niall McLaughlin + 20