Upton Meadows Primary School. The first BREEAM EXCELLENT primary School in UK.
In today’s world, sustainability is not just a trend; it’s a responsibility that architects must embrace. We always take our client’s concerns for sustainability very seriously on all of our schemes. In fact, Johnson Design Partnership achieved the first excellent-rated school for the Prince’s Foundation using the Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM for short) and this expertise has been reflected in numerous other projects since then. Creating a range of BREEAM architects within our architect firm to focus directly on environmentally friendly house designs to add to our sustainable practices.
During the design process, our Shropshire architects often actively investigate using innovative ‘eco-orientated’ architectural techniques, including everything from compacted earth construction to achieving passive ventilation. This has allowed us to achieve super high-performing building awards and give coverage to our BREAAM architects in the media.
Extension to the historic property by JDP featured on Channel 4’s
We have successfully designed houses to Passivhaus principles and our Shropshire architects team has been on courses to learn how to do it. However, a truly sustainable home is not just sustainable once built. From energy in use to energy in production, through from manufacture to construction and eventually the use of the building, Johnson Design Partnership tries to consider not just the usual Planning considerations but all these other issues during the design process.
People often focus on technology, be it power or heat generation, and we often deal with the various systems required to do this when looking at environmentally friendly house designs for our clients. but we find it’s always a good idea to consider the passive principles first; orientation and aspect, views in and views out, all have an underlying significance.
Johnson Design Partnership’s listed building architects recently created an extension to a historic house (link) utilising stone which was dug out of the site to create the lower walls. The bricklayers were a bit confused at the start but soon rose to the challenge and the building completed by our listed building architects was featured on Channel 4 TV!
It’s not necessarily the material which is the ultimate importance but how they are used.
There are a few ways of enhancing sustainability from Passivhaus, to Carbon Neutrality and various methodologies supported by the Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method and our BREEAM architects have been involved with most of these systems.
Sketch by Johnson Design Partnerships Shropshire architects for stack effect ventilation
The most important consideration is how the space is going to be used and by creating passively comfortable spaces that people want to be in to ensure its longevity.
We also avoid creating spaces which are inadequately lit or conversely get too much light and, therefore get too hot, reducing the use of heating, cooling and lighting where at all possible.
All UK buildings have to reach Building Regulations standards, however many of our projects surpass the usual thermal standards. bringing the clients significant savings on future bills and helping to develop environmentally friendly house designs.
Our Shropshire architects regularly apply Passivhaus principles and also try to maximise mechanical and electrical control systems. We find that properly detailed passive structures perform best and are more comfortable for the clients.
We try to specify good quality materials as they last longer and create less waste.
Some clients wish to push the boundaries and go for carbon neutrality or be totally ‘off grid’ and we’ve been involved in schemes seeking to use geothermal heat sources and self-contained eco-systems!