Design Approaches

Dream factory

Dream Factory
The rapid emergence of sustainable building in Ireland has been heavily influenced by the techniques of early-adopters extending from Scandinavia, to Canada, to Germany and Austria. John Hearne visited a recently completed timber home in Galway which uses Austrian know-how to couple air-tightness, high levels of insulation and healthy materials with a sustainable approach to heating and ventilation

Navan Credit Union

Architect Paul Leech explains why the new Navan Credit Union is arguably Ireland’s most innovative sustainable building to date, and outlines his hopes that the experience gained from this project can help the construction industry to realise sustainable building in Ireland.

Heaven sent

Heaven Sent
When it comes to redeveloping old buildings, green designers face two choices: replace existing structures with modern, energy efficient buildings or refurbish and avoid the embodied energy and waste of demolition and new construction. Lenny Antonelli visited a redeveloped convent in Booterstown, County Dublin that combines the best of both approaches.

Safe as Houses

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Conventional wisdom dictates that higher construction costs — for instance to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions — would either squeeze developers’ profit margins or increase house prices. Tom Dunne, Head of DIT’s School of Real Estate and Construction Economics, reveals how misguided this view could be...

Mixing It Up

Designing out carbon made easy
As Building Regulations tighten on carbon emissions, energy reduction and mandatory renewable energy targets, the task for designers becomes harder and harder. Bobby Gilbert of Bobby Gilbert and Associates explains how a new design tool is making sustainable design easier.

Good form

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If you are at all worried about keeping construction costs down and lengthening the useable lifespan of your building, it’s critical that energy performance is considered from the earliest stages of planning and design. John Hearne spoke to a number of leading Irish experts in sustainable design about following simple principles of orientation, form and layout to achieve substantial energy improvements for free

Bio Logic

Protecting occupant health with building biology
Stricter air-tightness standards might be helping to reduce energy use in new build, but is it leading to higher indoor concentrations of chemical and biological toxins? Lenny Antonelli investigates an emerging approach to building that is combining attention to environmental impact with consideration for the potential health effects of modern building materials and practices.

Early Developer

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In September, Sustainable Energy Ireland launched a major energy efficient housing development in Tuam, Co Galway. Houses in the development are over 70% more energy efficient than houses built to standard Building Regulations requirements. Construct Ireland’s John Hearne describes.

Super E

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Marie Stamp, Senior Trade Commissioner at the Canadian Embassy, Dublin, discusses the merits of Super E home build.

Inner Space

An increasing number of sustainable homes are being built in Ireland but many of them are in rural areas, and yet, Ireland is an increasingly urban society.
An increasing number of sustainable homes are being built in Ireland but many of them are in rural areas, and yet, Ireland is an increasingly urban society. Jason Walsh looks at one recent attempt to renovate a small terraced house in inner-city Dublin, bringing it up to modern environmental and energy efficiency standards.

Marketplace + companies featured in this article

Tipperary Energy Agency

'Tipperary Energy Agency has been successfully supporting Tipperary to reduce its energy demand for 20 years.