Land Planning and Natural Resource Utilization
Land Planning and Natural Resource Utilization: Design with Nature
Organic Architecture, in its essence, means developing with an interactive and site determined design approach. Natural features of a place include the geology, climate, vegetation and topography of a local, and are the building blocks of architectural design and planning strategies. Understanding the existing natural forces will allow sustainable projects to work in harmony with its macro and micro site components and not in opposition, giving a development a greater level of efficient and effective performance. Natural sites, both locally and within a regional context, provide a wealth of resources and valuable opportunities for projects to develop economically and thus sustainably. Existing development is another layer of land planning that must be carefully incorporated into a new development’s design and programming strategy. The effects of zoning regulations, neighboring developments, transportation systems, utility systems, patterns of human interaction and demographics all play key roles in determining functional requirements and patterns of new development. Organic Architecture makes these relationships central to the design and development strategy.
Both the natural resources and the existing development of a community are mapped to guide the way a new development is planned, programmed, designed and built.Forming a symbiotic alliance between the natural landscape and the build environment is the only way to maximize our efforts at sustainable development.
The patterns of typical development often do not mirror the natural landscape but rather conform to pre-established rules of strict geometric development patterns. This has the net effect of creating a mono-culture of human existence in pre-formed boxes and grids where we spend our lives. While we think we are living life to the fullest, we are merely experiencing it as it has been prescribed through the build environment. We are often separated from the natural patterns and processes that we have paved over, altered or shut out. There is an infinite and beautiful array of natural forms that are specific to existing and timeless processes of life that in fact, reflect a more efficient and healthy land use pattern for human habitation. These patterns are unique to each place and we must spend time to research and establish sustainable environmental land planning strategies that reflect a deeper connection and enhancement of existing resources.