Last week's editorial (AJ 20.07.06) was well put. We have long felt that the best route to more sustainable architecture is to create beautiful, slightly loose-fit buildings and spaces which changing occupants can enjoy for years to come. Architects and the industry as a whole must enhance their knowledge and appreciation of sustainability, ideally to the extent where it becomes as integral to the design process as the budget or shape of the site. An implicit and undemonstrative response to the key aspects of a design brief usually results in a more subtle and sophisticated architecture than one which crudely wears the generative ideas on its sleeve.
However, in these early days of relative ignorance on the subject, the more explicit 'exemplar project' must surely play an important, instructive role. Of course, the results of a hardcore green design process are often less balanced and less elegant than a more holistically considered building, but are these not the necessary test-beds for an underdeveloped aspect of the industry?
If they succeed in a genuinely promotional role of experiment and education, they are surely worth their salt in a wider context.
Rod Kemsley, Studio KAP, Glasgow.