Last edited 03 Dec 2020

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CIAT Website

School of Architectural Technology

This project was the winner of the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists (CIAT) 2018 Student Award for Excellence in Architectural Technology (Project).

The aim was to design an environmentally friendly building on IT Carlow campus for Architectural Technology students. Located on Kilkenny Road, Moanacurragh, Carlow, Republic of Ireland.

AT Carlow campus.png

The proposed design of the institute is with an inside-out concept – as well as outside-in, in relation to the surrounding context where welcoming urban spaces provide possibilities for outdoor work and teaching.

The new building design offers the students to be more creative, with additional facilities focusing on optimal learning and sharing their work with fellow students. The building is three storeys in total with a gentle slope elevation that gives double high one-storey level, two-storey level and three-storey level across the length of the building. The south side is single storey with double height ceiling for the architectural technolect workshop, which then goes to a two-storey high entrance with void to cafeteria and studio rooms below. Lastly to the three-storey side of the building which provides an atrium with central circulation stairway space with seating surrounded by studios, seminar rooms, a lecture theatre which is combined with the library space, meeting rooms on the top floor and WCs. The whole building is about 6000m2 of floor area including the courtyard on the roof level.

The design of the building aims to achieve the best passive standards for heating and cooling, ventilation and daylighting using natural resources and studying the microclimate of the site, as well as implementing locally used materials.

Ireland’s climate is influenced most by the Atlantic Ocean. As a result, it doesn’t have the extreme temperatures that other countries at similar latitude would have. The average temperature is a mild 10°C.

The aim of this project was to design an environmentally friendly building on IT Carlow campus for Architectural Technology students. Located on Kilkenny Road, Moanacurragh, Carlow, Republic of Ireland.

The materials used for the building were carefully analysed for best performance using BIM and life cycle assessment. Throughout the project, the materials where analysed and compared using a tool called Tally which is an add-in tool for Revit software. All materials were chosen locally within an 800km radius and are EPD approved.

This building features glue-laminated wood, cross-laminated timber (CLT) and a wood-concrete composite structure that replaces the traditional steel/concrete construction type that is common in the area. This system structure reduces this building’s carbon footprint and maximises the use of renewable materials.

To ensure users are comfortable within the building, I’ve used the right combination of passive and active design strategies.

Passive design strategies use ambient energy sources instead of purchased energy like electricity or natural gas. These strategies include daylighting, natural ventilation, and solar energy. High-performance buildings use the right blend of passive and active design strategies to minimise energy, materials, water and land use.

Active design strategies use purchased energy to keep the building comfortable. These strategies include forced-air HVAC systems, heat pumps, radiant panels or chilled beams and electric lights. Hybrid systems use some mechanical energy to enhance the use of ambient energy sources. These strategies include heat recovery ventilation, economiser ventilation, solar thermal systems, radiant facades and even ground source heat pumps might be included in this category.

The outside façades are different depending on their orientation and for aesthetics towards the public view. The façade showcases how the construction, sustainable initiatives and installation principles are fully adapted and integrated with the architectural concept. The glazed facades feature an integrated movable louvre facade that provides shading for the façade architecture, which plays on the sun orientation and combination aluminium shutters which add warmth and variation to the composition.

[edit] Judge’s comments

This project was based upon the design of a new school of Architectural Technology in Carlow and demonstrated excellence in Architectural Technology with a creative, innovative design solution underpinned by the application of science and engineering. The student used passive strategies for heating, ventilation and daylighting and used meteorological data in an attempt to profile the dynamic characteristics of environmental and sustainability criteria to create an innovative yet workable design solution. The rich text within the report coupled with the quantitative analyses provided an objective focus for the context and concept and grounded the design and creativity in reality and workability. All the design categories were addressed to a high standard including accessibility and inclusivity, buildability and assembly, performance and durability, and environment and sustainability. An exemplary winner for the 2018 Project Student Award.

"Demonstrated excellence in Architectural Technology with a creative, innovative design solution."

This article was written by Elizabete Jakobsone of the Institute of Technology, Carlow. It was first published in the Autumn 2018 issue of AT magazine featured on the CIAT website.


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