Posted October 9th, 2014 by Christy Serafini
Today, modern architecture is just as concerned with the environmental impact of construction as it is with aesthetic and other concerns. Current construction means not just building for your client, but also taking into account how building in a more “green” style can reduce costs and improve quality of life. Taking a look at the top eco-friendly trends, including architectural metal panels, in building and remodeling, these developments combine a deep concern with the environment as well as a commitment to solid design principles.
The use of slatted or perforated, grate-style architectural metal panels is not only attractive– it has positive environmental effects as well. Besides often reducing the amount of support needed in installation, the design of the panel is meant to allow airflow and stabilize area temperature. This reduces energy costs, as well leading to more comfortable work spaces overall. Because there are a number of different metal panel options available, it’s good to talk to a knowledgeable installer with experience in eco-friendly construction, depending on the desired style and airflow outcome. The use of architectural metal panels is not only cost-effective, but also reduces power use and improves the overall work space.
The Rise of Solar Paneling
An increasing number of new construction jobs and remodels involve solar panels for two reasons: solar electric panels can reduce power consumption and solar heating panels can harness the power of the sun to reduce heating costs. Available in a variety of styles and wattage levels, solar panels are becoming an ubiquitous part of modern commercial and residential rooftops due to their decreasing cost. Further, tax and utility incentives make the installation of solar panels into both a positive statement about your company while enacting long-term cost savings.
Recycled and Industrial Materials
Construction has always made use to a degree of recycled material, but with the greater emphasis on recycling and waste, more recycled material than ever is being used in modern building design. While recycled material was often used in insulation, now, paneling made completely of recycled materials, both wood- and metal- based, is increasingly common. In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency now has full a checklist of ways to replace interior and exterior elements with recycled, non-mined industrial materials.
New Eco-Friendly Lighting Choices
While there has been a general trend towards more environmentally friendly lighting in previous decades, never has this been more apparent in the construction industry, which uses green, cost-reducing principles in the choice of smaller and larger lighting systems. Choices are based upon power reduction as well as longevity, reducing the need to replace lighting, as well as switching to high-efficiency fluorescent and longer-lasting LED systems, noting the higher tax benefits and environmental impact of doing so.
Increased Use of Natural Stone
The use of stone in construction has been on the rise. Besides its lower potential effects on the environment, its low cost and availability are making it a more popular choice in green construction. Stone naturally retains and blocks heat, making it ideal for reducing room temperature. Add to the fact that stone is virtually indestructible and recyclable and it’s a natural choice.