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Ulrich Pfammatter
Building for a Changing Culture and Climate. World Atlas of Sustainable Architecture
Introduction by Stefan Behnisch
225 x 280 mm, 584 pages, c. 2,000 illustrations
Hardcover with jacket
ISBN 978-3-86922-282-0 (English)
EUR 98.00 / CHF 124.00
May 2014. DOM publishers, Berlin

Now available at DOM publishers:

Ulrich Pfammatter

Building for a Changing Culture and Climate: World Atlas of Sustainable Architecture

From Traditional to High Tech: Building in the Time of Climate Change

Hurricanes, floods, droughts are the worst possible scenarios, but it is not actually necessary to invoke these to demonstrate that building in the time of climate change poses some entirely new challenges. Architecture has always had to respond to environmental conditions and to develop strategies for integrating or overcoming them. In Building for a Changing Culture and Climate: World Atlas of Sustainable Architecture, author Ulrich Pfammatter undertakes the daunting task of documenting and discussing buildings from all over the world under the aspect of sustainability.

From vernacular architecture to exemplary contemporary buildings and visionary concepts, 333 case studies introduce solutions and strategies that address the permanent change impacting human culture and the climate. A wide range of different projects illustrates the many innovative and flexible responses that are possible, be it in the Antarctic or the Tropics, on the steep slopes of the Himalaya or at sea level. Readers are taken on an extensive journey around the world during which they are initiated into local skills, witness feats of structural engineering, and learn about the scope of low and high technology. Organized into five sections, the book begins by considering the genius loci – how projects relate to their spatial context and integrate with their urban or natural surroundings. Ambience and local identity are discussed here alongside change. The central chapters are devoted to building in extreme situations and protection from natural forces as well as other challenges which the climate poses for architecture. Traditional materials from local sources are introduced, as are innovative new developments and a broad palette of functional spatial concepts responding to cultural and climate change. The final chapter addresses the reuse of abandoned industrial sites and different approaches to the architectural heritage.

Pfammatter advocates a new focus in architecture. With resources dwindling, he argues, it is high time to stop and think. Traditional skills can prove just as helpful as the latest technologies or “learning from nature” – or a publication about sustainable architecture. This book is a must-read for anyone involved in the construction business, for architects, engineers, urban developers and neighbourhood planners, and for curators of historic monuments. Readers interested in sustainable architecture will discover a multitude of surprising, original, and sometimes very simple architectural solutions from different cultures and climate zones. The World Atlas of Sustainable Architecture is an indispensable mine of information on the impact of cultural and climate change on construction and design.


© Ulrich Pfammatter© Ulrich Pfammatter© Ulrich Pfammatter