This design attempts to bridge and create synergies that will allow a smooth transition into a greener Vancouver in the near future.
As much as we love to see new and shiny built environments, retrofitting of existing structures is necessary and wise. Since most of the environmental impacts are associated with building maintenance and operations, retrofits should focus on making structures that use local renewable materials, are well insulated, double the life of a structure, reduce energy use and maintain a healthy indoor environment.
Goodbye, off-street parking
It is well documented that free parking significantly increases solo driving and represents an environmentally insensitive subsidy for a service that is costly and unnecessary. It is suggested to eliminate free parking and set the parking fee at a rate that guarantees a maximum of 85% parked cars on average to ensure optimal entry and exit. The revenue will be used as agreed by local residents and merchants.
Restoring the natural water cycle
Zooming out from the building level, even if such buildings are considered "sustainable," a great
deterioration of the natural water cycle is evident. We need to create more permeable surfaces as well as plant more trees that hold an impressive amount of water in their leaves and provide other important services like capturing carbon, creating a microclimate and promoting new habitats.
Creating real transportation alternatives
To offer real travel options, these must be convenient for people. Secure bicycle storage and rental is necessary to promote environmentally friendly and healthy travel options. It is proposed to remove an existing parking lane and designate it for exclusive bicycle use.
These proposais may seem drastic, but they use the best science available in a concept that is practical. Gutrowski et al. has suggested that a "floor" exists that limits the impact of voluntary changes towards a sustainable future. Therefore, this proposai incorporates changes that effectively allows for a vibrant and healthy community.
(From competitor's text)
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- Presentation Panel