Evolutionary Performance: Passive Design for a Hotel in Central India

By James Kraus.

Published by The Design Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Merging sustainable design and energy usage in developing economies is one of the most significant architectural design challenges. This paper outlines the process of an architectural design project at Skidmore Owings and Merrill from 2006-2007. The project is a 250 room hotel in Hyderabad, India bolstered by a government economic incentive which encourages tourism and informed by environmental sensitivity and parametric computer models. The objective of this paper is to demonstrate that thorough understanding of both the external environment and the internal environment combined with clear understanding of client goals, computer simulation, and knowledge of fabrication techniques can result in a successful passive designed architecture which can significantly reduce energy demand and increase indoor quality.
This paper focuses on thee primary design concepts to reach the final solution. First, an examination of the electromagnetic spectrum as it pertains to visual comfort. This paper explains how basic science can provide a high performance elegant design. Secondly, the paper validates a process for identifying specific environmental parameters (in this a case, a mild tropical climate with solar insulation and lux levels) and is supported by empirical analysis. Finally, the process of optimization of a pattern for views and daylight combines three types of parameters: of design, fabrication and performance into a building information model to create a final design solution that lowers the energy use of the hotel and creates a beautiful prototype. The resulting design had a 20% reduction in energy load in mechanical systems and provided a further optimized design through multi-disciplinary collaboration, environmental sensitivity and building information modelling.

Keywords: Passive Design, Sustainable Design, Optimisation

Design Principles and Practices: An International Journal, Volume 3, Issue 6, pp.39-54. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 2.536MB).

James Kraus

Senior Architectural Professional, Architecture, New York, New York, USA

James Kraus has been leading SOM's efforts in Sustainable design, helping to integrate and guide the development of peformative, environmental, simulation tools in generating advanced geometry(and vice-versa) Utilizing scripting, and working with performance tools (such as Ecotect, IES, and advanced 3D modeling tools) on all SOM projects. James is activly engaged in all scales of the design practice including urban design, hospitality and commercial office buildings. Prior to Joining SOM he completed a Masters degree at the Architectural Association in London in Environment and Energy. He also holds a Bachelor of Architecture from Virginia Tech.

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