The architecture fraternity has evolved enormously with time. The advancement and enhancement in building construction have rapidly shaped the advanced technological cities and advanced automated skyscrapers. But the real question arises if these are an investment or expenditure for the long run? Will the future architects thank the present ones for the works they do. Of course not, these buildings today seem extraterrestrial and gorgeous yet the future looks bleak if this continues. We need to take baby steps wide leaps to care for the future.
The problem is massive but the solutions are finite. Very few, well, simpler said than done. Affordability and environmental friendliness now come into the picture. A wide range of materials are available and some of them are already into practice. For example stone cladding, glass, ship containers, concrete sheets, panels, earth, straw, waste materials, etc.
Below are few affordable and sustainable materials, architects today, must try and experiment with.
1. Absolute waste materials
The garbage generated is pure unwanted material with no value. This can indeed be used in the built industry. It has already been ventured by some genius architects, designers, and social enthusiasts. Literally from plastic wrappers, bottles to cigarette buds, from the humongous waste to the tiniest of all can be put to use. The dismantled and worn of building components of other buildings can be revamped and used to build walls of a new structure. Eco brick is a mind-blowing concept, in which plastic waste is stuffed into plastic bottles and compressed to attain strength. This brick can be used widely to create structures of all sorts. Truly reusability is like a blessing in disguise.
2. Corrugated metal sheets
While looking for cheap materials to build houses, this one tops the list. It is a material that is really cost-effective and thoroughly recyclable. It was once used solely in the industries and now has trodden paths in residential and commercial too. Very low maintenance, it requires a paint coating or zinc application on the surface, only to prevent rust. It is itself resistant to harsh weather conditions. Architects can include this in their material list and find solutions to its heavyweight and the difficulty of usability with it.
3. Eco-friendly straw
Natural substance with excellent thermal insulation properties, the bales of the straw are excellent material to build walls, roofs, etc. due to the thickness, turbidity, and rigidity. They can be carved out, to provide window openings, doors as customized. They aren’t suitable for humid and rainy weather conditions. They are fire-resistant and hence experimented by design thinkers and architects.
The excavation of earth for foundations is widely being used to construct structures by emerging architects. Rammed earth as a concept rose a while ago. A mixture of earth, sand, and clay mixture and then used to construct by compacting it in layers with a rammer. The appearance is created naturally, and a rich façade leaves the observers in awe. Not just this, but residences are being created into the earth, by digging it. They consume minimal energy and rose to prominence after featuring in the movies like the hobbit and lord of the rings. The natural walls of the ground act as confined boundaries of the space. They provide cooling inside as well and don’t require any construction materials.
5. Prefabricated panels
Requiring a very little amount of time and money. Prefabricated panels are a perfect option to build low budget houses with a lavish and contemporary modern chic look. They provide an array of flexibility in terms of options. It offers a stronger, tighter fit since the indoors are fitted in advance. Aesthetically they can be designed according to the customization of the owners since there is a possibility that they do not wish to reveal the original material. Hence they do not look prefabricated. An important advantage of this material is the cut of labor cost and on-site wastage and removal of material shortage and delays due to certain weather conditions.
These materials are eco-friendly, durable, and budding to rise to the peak in this industry. A truly dedicated architect needs to realize the fact and start some trial and error methods to discover something more cheap and sustainable for an even astounding future. Many established architects, firms, and organizations have devoted themselves to this Zen style construction and already contributing to this pious act. The invention and ideas in the bright minds of designers have been path-breaking, like the portable and tiny house out of ship containers, reclaimed timber, etc. for affordability being the critical factor and then, of course, a shift in the orthodoxical living approach. A house on the wheel is for those adventurous travel enthusiasts, nomadic at heart, experimental enough to try out something not just out of the box but out of concrete masonry.