What does sustainability mean to you?

Linked Student

I think of sustainability as adjusting human practices and societal infrastructures in order to maintain and replenish natural resources so that our current generation and future generations can be supported by the earth. This comes with balancing economic growth, environmental impacts, and social well-being.

In application to the built environment, I think this involves making decisions in the design and construction phases with sustainability in consideration. This includes decisions like choosing materials with reduced carbon emissions and using design techniques for energy efficiency.

An example of a building project that I think promotes sustainability is One Central Park, an dual high-rise apartment complex, in Sydney, Australia. It includes a park at its base whose greenery continues up throughout the whole complex. This promotes air quality as well as shading, leading to less net emissions and less energy consumption.


Another building that promotes sustainability is the Vancouver Convention Center West in Canada. It utilizes a green roof that is also home to four hives of bees that pollinates the greenery to keep the roof green, and essentially functioning in reducing unwanted thermal heat gain. The roof’s slope also helps with water drainage and the piles that support it over the water promotes the marine ecosystem.