Vision – San Francisco, Bay Area Architects on a mission
hb+a Architects located in San Francisco, bay area has an obsessive focus on creating awe-inspiring, healthy spaces with sustainability being the driving force. From the inception of the practice, the vision has been to create a significant positive dent in the building industry and find ways to cure the problems that the built environment is guilty of.
The Problem: The building industry is the biggest culprit in the use of fossil fuel generated, electricity. Building operations consume 74.9%, of electricity generated annually and because of that buildings are the biggest contributor of green house gas emissions.
Solution: In the early planning and design phase an energy model presenting an accurate energy analysis can depict ways to improve energy and operational performance of any system. Design and sustainability teams along with the client need to collaborate from the early design phases and periodically verify the energy performance of the proposed systems, to save time and money and ensure optimal energy performance.
Problem: On the flip side of the energy conservation movement in force since, the oil embargo of 1973, there is the ‘unhealthy’ indoor environment. The focus on energy conservation has created poisonous cocoons of interior spaces. There are higher allergens in super-insulated spaces vs those which are not. Besides allergic reactions, indoor pollutants can cause both short and long-term health problems, including respiratory tract infections, asthma, headaches, congestion, eye and skin irritations, coughing, sneezing, fatigue, dizziness and nausea. Children are more susceptible to the risks of indoor air pollutants because of their weaker immune systems.
Solution: The indoor environment is more polluted than outdoors, but total eradication of indoor air pollutants is often not practical. It is more realistic to use building materials, finishes, and processes that reduce indoor air pollution. Research shows a clear link between indoor air quality and occupants’ productivity and health. Management of Indoor Air quality needs to continue from design through construction to daily operations.
Our firm proactively advocates clients and peers on sustainable building practices, we have worked with municipalities to help establish ‘green measures’ and in some cases have helped pass green building ordinances. Our focus is to provide innovative building design and technologies that help reach “net zero goals” for both energy and emissions. We advise clients on the most cutting edge technologies in renewable energy systems, to help them achieve high performance buildings, with maximized sensory experience in architecture and design. We have a long standing passion for sustainable design with real world solutions and financial analyses embedded in the knowledge of building technologies and practices.
If you would like to know about energy saving measures or are wondering about your building’s indoor air quality, hb+a Architects can help. Our team’s combined experience in achieving energy efficiency can help you develop the design and specifications for any size project, and help develop an energy model that meets both Title 24 part 6 requirements and LEED. We help you through the planning phase with our streamlined process that is cost effective and ensures compliance with relevant codes and ordinances while creating energy efficient, healthy buildings.