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Bold Innovation in Building

I’m always happy when someone puts the money behind projects that make sense.

So when I saw this article in INHABITAT, I was pretty psyched.

Just like the first person to write a check for a Bauhaus building cemented modernism, the person who green-lighted The Strata in London could one day be known as the person who made self-reliant buildings a reality.

The Strata - London

Whoa, that is NOT a glass box.  How could someone have finally paid for one of these to be built?  Oh yeah, it’s in London.  (side note, here’s what we’re building for our new embassy there.  Shameful, I know)

But beyond it’s looks, there’s a great practical side, too.  The building comes with three wind turbines build in. Here’s how INHABITAT described it:

Nicknamed “The Razor”, the 148 meter-tall Strata tower is topped with a trio of turbines that will produce enough power to meet 8% of its energy needs.

We’ve seen skyscrapers studded with wind turbines before, but the Strata is the first building to integrate turbines directly into its facade.

Measuring in at 42 stories tall, the Strata tower has enough height to eclipse the buildings surrounding it, allowing it to take full advantage of the area’s 35mph wind speeds. The tower is also designed to utilize the Venturi effect created by nearby structures to force wind through the turbines at accelerated rates, generating an expected 50MWh of electricity annually.

According to The Guardian, each of the building’s 19KW turbines will have 5 blades rather than 3, which will reduce noise during operation. The skyscraper will also boast other green building strategies such as the exclusive use of natural ventilation, high-performance glazing, and other energy efficiency measures that will keep the building’s power use 6% below current building requirements.

The Strata tower cost £113 million and is set to complete construction this April. The skyscraper’s revolutionary design makes bold steps towards meeting the UK’s requirement that all new buildings be zero-carbon by the year 2019

So while it’s not carbon-neutral, this building is great looking and will require 14% less power than normal.  Considering the size of the building, that is a huge benefit to us all.  Good job.

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