Architectural Technology: Trade-offs and Imbalances
As architectural technology tries to solve one problem it often creates another. For example, as lighting illuminates it often also emits heat; therefore, making the HVAC system work harder. The systems seem out of balance as one trades off side-effects with another.
It appears that architectural technology is not yet highly efficient. Systems do not work together and as a result, occupants are deprived their optimal sensory experience. Take a hospital for instance: Often, patients must recover in spite of the hospital environment which surrounds them – from a sensory perception point of view. Buildings can be cold, intimidating and uninviting as architectural technology is installed onto architecture in an additive manner.
To help solve this dilemma, it becomes necessary for architectural technology to become more flexible. What if its physical appearance and functionality could change dependent on occupant needs in real-time? The key is integration – physically, acoustically, aesthetically and so on.
Architectural technology should become a positive part of occupant environments in any building type. Its appearance, its sounds and its functions should all contribute to the occupant experience in a positive way. If they do not, then that architectural technology is hindering the environment from doing its job – functionally and aesthetically.