To be more green and sustainable, one of the goal for the construction projects or even the cities is about the carbon emission reduction which directly effect the climate change and global warming which we obviously witness the changing pattern of our weather. The action to reduce the carbon emission come in many ways such as installation of more efficiency air conditioning system and the better insulation property of building envelope to save energy which will effect to the lesser consumption of electricity and then to the lesser energy produced from the powerplant.
There are other attemps which more direct to the source of the carbondioxide production, the transportation. The transporation seems might not involve with the building and architecture. However, the way the residents or user of the building will travel to and from the project could be predetermine and design by the architect and the developer. The project that designated the location close to the mass transportation and alternative transportation has more chances to reduce the use of the private car which directly reduce the use of gas and oil. And this is how architecture can help the global problem which mentioned above.
According to LEED version 4 which probably the most widely used of green building certification had stated the category of Location & transportation in 5 credits that involving in the transportation including; Surrounding density and diverse uses, Access to quality transit, Bicycle facilities, Reduced parking footprint and Green vehicles. These credits show how architecture has effected the carbondioxide production by the transportation and how this credits give the guideline to reduce it.
Bicycle has shown its potential as an alternative transportation. It has been with our civilization for hundred years and perhaps it will be with us further than the gas running automobile. Biking is the fastest travelling method without any engine and it is also fun which become more fashionable to many people around the world. But how can the architecture help promote the bycicle usage?
Back to LEED certification, the new LEED BD+C: New Construction version 4, Bicycle facilities give 1 point for this credit which and intention for bicycle facilities is “to promote bicycling and transportation efficiency and reduce vehicle distance traveled. To improve public health by encouraging utilitarian and recreational physical activity”. The statement is clear on how the architecture can provide positive impact to the cycling, but what will be the real implication of it?
The start of building a bike friendly environment is the bike parking or bike rack. The building owner can endorse the use of bicycle, or on the other hand, attracts the cycler is the proper bike parking facility. The building should provide sufficient bicycle parking or storage for users and visitors and it should be located close to the entrance of the building. The separated bike lane or bike track from the road to the building entrance or bike storage could shown more bike-friendly look of the property.
However, all above are just the basic need of the cycler from the building. There are several idea to create the bike friendly architecture which changing the shape of how people interact with the building and reflect to the design of the building itself. You will see the building with the wider walkway and corridor which the cycler able to take the bike into the building. There are also some buildings that provide the special elevator that the resident can bring their bike to their room.
I believe many of architects are also the cycler too. But what I would remark to the developer is that the cycler are not the poor people. The bike today can cost you hundred thousand bath or more. It become more luxurios. And if any project would like to add more green feature with luxury but young and energatic look, try put the bicycle friendly design to your project.