Smart Living Building Design Process

Interdisciplinarity and the experimental character of the project raise a parallel and reflexive approach: finding a common language for the whole chain of actors, from the researcher to the project owner.
Which process will allow innovation, quality, but also performance? What roles and responsibilities must each of the stakeholders fulfill? These and other questions are to be answered by this experiment.

The current building production process in Switzerland is defined by SIA procedures,which propose the architectural competition as the main means to respond to a fixed brief and to reach architectural quality. The decision is quickly made by a heterogeneous jury, which does not share evaluation criteria and does not have proper tools to check technical performance. SIA procedures do not specify the type of collaboration between different stakeholders, especially architects and engineers’ collaboration, which is a key factor for reaching both the architectural qualities and environmental performance objectives of the smart living building.

Adopted approach for the SLB research program on design process
The definition of a building process for the smart living building, taking into account the environmental performance, the program, the urban context and the future users has been studied. The research hypothesis – the architectural quality of the future smart living lab building is influenced by its production process throughout its entire life cycle – has been converted into a main issue:
how to reach simultaneously architectural qualities, user comfort and an environmental performance?

An iterative and incremental brief is proposed to improve the RIBA model by gradually introducing the criteria of architectural qualities and environmental performance, and by allowing users to specify their needs. Collaborative conception phases (test studies and preliminary design) between several studios, organized in thematic sequences that allow a continuous evaluation of design proposals and the appropriation of a low carbon tool (ELSA) is proposed.

For further details, see publications below

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Institute for Swiss and international construction law, University of Fribourg


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State of Fribourg – Switzerland