London Design Festival 2021

20 SEPT 2021
For the past few weeks I've been part of a team designing a Net-Zero Carbon Shophouse for the London Design Festival 2021.

This has been a fascinating process involving many people around the world working to hone the design. You can see it here on the Protiotype page for the Shophouse Project.

The Design Future Build concept is to challenge the existing paradigms of construction and design and factory build projects from mass timber for a common topology found throughout Asia. TheShophouse.

So we imposed upon ourselves a constraint - 6m wide by 35m long site - located in the middle of a block. It would have been easy to select a site on a corner, or where there is light and air from all sides. But a middle block site is the most challenging. Solving problems here would mean that the other sites would be much easier. And the mid-block location is of course the most common topology along an Asia street. It is even found along Colombo Street - and in fact the genesis of the design came from a concept I developed for a mid-block in Colombo north of Brougham Street.

However the site was transposed to a real location in three cities, Singapore, Pune India, and Darwin Australia.

The structure is mass-timber - walls and floors form the main structure and bracing, with some steel required at the end walls to form portal frames. With further modelling we expect that even this steel would be removed. However we wished to create a real world example, cost it out, and to model the performance both in energy use, and embedded carbon.

The live site - Design Future Build - is much more comprehensive in its description of the project. In many ways this is the point. For a virtual conference the website is the project.

I continue to work with Protiotype on developing processes and topologies that can achieve a better built environment. The presentation - Open Source Modularity - is one such example of previous collaborations. An earlier one is the questioning and musing on the notion of a Solid State City - a dense integrated city imbued with intelligence, that ever changes depending upon need.

We hope to take part in more similar events - but mostly we want o build our own projects. Watch this space.
By Hab3