Sustainable building refurbishment : process based approaches with the Hotel Klaus K refurbishment case.

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School of Arts, Design and Architecture | Master's thesis
P1 Ark A
Degree programme
creative Sustainability
The refurbishment of existing buildings plays a significant role in contemporary urban scenery for a sustainable environment. Well planned refurbishment can extend the life cycle of a building. In addition, a great deal of energy conservation can be achieved in the building sector through improving existing building stock. Yet, as sustainable refurbishment is still new in the field of construction, the scope of work and the process are not well organized. This thesis therefore tries to understand the differences between the conventional process of refurbishment and a more sustainable process. Targets, criteria and approaches to sustainable refurbishment should also differ from other projects. As every building is unique, not only in its structure, technical system and typology but also in local context, incorporating surroundings and historical and cultural qualities, approaches towards building refurbishment should vary according to these conditions. The thesis analyses diverse approaches to sustainable refurbishment through methodological frameworks, market-available tools and several example cases. To apply studied approaches to a practical case, the Hotel Klaus K refurbishment is introduced with entailed specific project conditions and local context. Interviews with project members involved in the refurbishment case help to understand the different roles and interests of each member and to examine the actual process of decision making. Based on the project analysis, the last part of the thesis suggests ideal processes and target and holistic scenarios for sustainable refurbishment in the Hotel Klaus K project. In general, diverse stakeholders and project members are engaged in decision making process of a refurbishment project. Moreover, many constraints result from conditions of an existing building and residents which represent limitations to architects, preventing them from exerting the full capacity of free design. Architects should be able to understand the actual uses of existing buildings and residents and communicate with diverse project members from the initial phase of a project to the end of a refurbishment. Accordingly, the role of architects should be extended to include planning extra work and the process of sustainable refurbishment. Ultimately, the thesis aims to draw an innovative path towards sustainable refurbishment by extending the role of architects.
Siikala, Antti-Matti
Thesis advisor
le Roux, Simon
building refurbishment, sustainable architecture, hotel Klaus K, RAKE building, process design, pre-design phase, role of architects.
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