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Autodesk/AIA survey finds growing interest in green design

90% of architects expect to incorporate some sustainable elements by 2012

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Green Building Gets Attention!

Green building has captured the attention of both architects and their clients, according to the 2007 Autodesk/AIA Green Index, an annual survey by Autodesk Inc. and the American Institute of Architects (AIA).

Architects Meet Client Demand for Green Building Features

The index showed that 70% of architects say client demand is the leading driver of green building and that the primary reason owners and developers are demanding greener buildings is for reduced operating costs.

Architects are responding by significantly increasing their use of sustainable elements such as high-efficiency HVAC systems and recycled building materials, as well as software to model energy use.

90% of Architects to Incorporate Sustainable Elements by 2012

According to the index, less than half of architects were incorporating sustainable design practices into their projects five years ago. However, the number is quickly rising, with 90% of architects expecting to incorporate some sustainable elements by 2012.

The survey also shows that architects are making significant strides to meet their client demand for green building. Working to develop their sustainable design skills, 88% of respondents have received training or continuing education focused on green building.

According to this year's survey, the industry has seen a 25% increase in the number of architects using high-efficiency HVAC systems in their projects over the past five years.

Growing Green Design Elements

Other areas of growth include the use of highly reflective roofing materials, which has jumped 18% since 2002, and the adoption of energy modeling and baseline analysis, which has seen a 17% increase in that same period.

Although 50% of architects reported having clients inquire about green building on the majority of their projects, only 30% of architects actually implemented green building elements in their projects. In addition, only 10% of architects are currently measuring the carbon footprint of their projects.

When asked what green building efforts they expect to adopt in the next five years, over half the respondents said they will use tools to enable the prediction and evaluation of the environmental impact and lifecycle of the building materials used.

For more information, see the AIA Web site:

Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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