Research Blog

social benefits of green buildings, koru architects, eco architect, sustainable architect, green architect, sustainable design, eco design, brighton, green design, green buildings, healthy buildings, environmental benefits of green buildings, economic benefits of green buildings, social benefits of green buildings

Benefits of Green Buildings: part 3 – social benefits

As World Green Building Week 2018 approaches (24 - 30 Sep), we thought we’d share some of the most recent research on the social benefits of green buildings. This post is part of a series which will explain why we should all be aiming to ‘green’ our buildings, and furthermore, why ...
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koru architects, eco architect, sustainable architect, green architect, sustainable design, eco design, brighton, green design, green buildings, economic benefits of green buildings

Benefits of Green Buildings: part two – economic benefits

As World Green Building Week 2018 approaches (24 - 30 Sep), we thought we’d share some of the most recent research on the economic benefits of green buildings. This post is part of a series which will explain why we should all be aiming to ‘green’ our buildings, and furthermore, why ...
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social benefits of green buildings, koru architects, eco architect, sustainable architect, green architect, sustainable design, eco design, brighton, green design, green buildings, healthy buildings, environmental benefits of green buildings, economic benefits of green buildings, social benefits of green buildings

Benefits of Green Buildings: part one – environmental benefits

As World Green Building Week 2018 approaches (24 - 30 Sep), we thought we’d share some of the most recent research on the environmental benefits of green buildings. This post is part of a series which will explain why we should all be aiming to ‘green’ our buildings, and furthermore, why ...
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save water, reduce water consumption, koru architects, eco architect, sustainable architect

How to save water: a guide to reducing water consumption

If you live in the UK, water may seem abundant. But those of us wanting to live a more sustainable life should be looking at ways we can save water, as treating wastewater is a very energy-intensive process of filtration, chemical treatment and pumping – usually from miles away. With a ...
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commissioning an architect, koru architects, eco architects, brighton, hove, sustainable design

Commissioning an architect: how and why?

Commissioning an architect can be a daunting prospect if you’re not familiar with it. In this post we break down the process, referring to the Royal Institute of British Architects’ (RIBA) guidelines.  Do I need an architect? By commissioning an architect you can add value to your project in many ...
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energy-efficient glazing, koru architects, eco architects, double glazing, triple glazing,

Energy-efficient glazing: all you need to know

As we’ve said before, one of the most important steps you can take to reduce your carbon footprint is to make your home greener. Energy-efficient glazing can go a long way to helping you do this. The amount of heat lost through single-glazed windows varies according to which source you ...
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sustainable architect, sustainable design, eco architect, eco design, green architect, green design, Koru Architects

Why choose a sustainable architect?

A sustainable architect designs a sustainable life Choosing a sustainable architect might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about making your lifestyle more green, but it can actually have the biggest impact. As public awareness of the human causes of climate change increases, more ...
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Issi Rousseva

Meet the Team: Issi Rousseva

Every week we'll get to know a member of the Koru Architects team outside of the office. This week it's the turn of Issi Rousseva. What is your position at Koru Architects? I’m an architect with several of my own projects: I’m currently working on new builds, refurbishments and extensions ...
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Meet the Team: Mark Pellant

Every week we’ll get to know a member of the Koru Architects team outside of the office. This week it’s the turn of Mark Pellant. What is your position at Koru? Managing Director. What do you like about working at Koru? We work in a creative environment that promotes thoughtful ...
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Meet the Team: Aylin Metin

Every week we’ll get to know a member of the Koru Architects team outside of the office. This week it’s the turn of Aylin Metin. What is your position at Koru? I'm an Architectural Assistant, working towards becoming a fully-qualified Architect. Not long to go! What do you like about ...
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How to have a greener Christmas

It's the beginning of December and Christmas is just around the corner - a time of family, celebration but most worryingly, waste. The Christmas period is a frenzy of purchases, whether that be food, drinks, presents, wrapping paper, christmas trees... altogether, lots of waste is involved. There are many simple, ...
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/ / Research Blog
building with earth, super natural materials, koru architects, eco architect, sustainable architect

Benefits of building with earth, plus examples (#SuperNaturalMaterials 9)

This is the ninth post in our Super Natural Materials series - you can view the whole series here. The origins of building with earth Building with earth is an ancient practice. From rammed earth, to clay, to cob and mud-brick, the earth beneath our feet holds versatile properties and great potential ...
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bioplastics, koru architects, super smart materials, eco architect, eco design

The benefits of bioplastics (#SuperSmartMaterials)

Bioplastics originate from biological material. We all know that oil and gas originate from biological organisms. But plastics derived from these natural oils and gases aren't bioplastics. So, what is a bioplastic? One of the first synthetic plastics was made from cellulose, a substance made by plants and trees. This ...
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sheep wool, natural materials, natural insulation, koru architects, eco architects

Natural insulation: the benefits of sheep wool

Insulation is one of the best ways to increase energy efficiency within a space; it will keep you warm in the winter and cool in the summer. There are no tricks as to what is in sheep wool – it's the wool from a sheep. Now that that's out of ...
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design affects learning, koru architects, eco architects, sustainable design

Built to Learn: how design affects learning outcomes

There are many different variables that affect one's ability to learn. In our new report, we break down how design affects learning outcomes and how we can increase cognition through design. Everyone in the education sector has similar core goals: to help students broaden their minds, develop important life skills, ...
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Benefits of building with cob, plus examples (#SuperNaturalMaterials 8)

This is the eighth post in our Super Natural Materials series - you can view the whole series here. What is cob? Cob is a mixture of sandy-sub soil, clay and straw. It's mixed by crushing the particles together by either dancing on it or using the head of a ...
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Benefits of building with straw, plus examples (#SuperNaturalMaterials 7)

This is the seventh post in our Super Natural Materials series - you can view the whole series here. How do you use straw in construction? Straw-bale construction is a building method that uses bales of straw as structural elements, building insulation or even both – it's a sustainable method ...
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Renewable Energy: A Comprehensive Guide to Biomass

This is the second post in our new Renewable Energy series, where we will give the ins and outs of renewable energy that is able to be used throughout residential and commercial spaces. What is it? Biomass is simply, fuel that is developed from organic materials - a renewable, sustainable ...
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Renewable Energy: A Comprehensive Guide to Wind Power

This is the third post in our new Renewable Energy series, where we will give the ins and outs of renewable energy that is able to be used throughout residential and commercial spaces. What is it? Wind is a form of solar energy. Winds are caused by the uneven heating ...
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Renewable Energy: A Comprehensive Guide to Solar (Part 3)

This is the third part to the first post in our new Renewable Energy series, where we will give the ins and outs of renewable energy that is able to be used throughout residential and commercial spaces. What is it? There are three types of solar: PV, Thermal and Hybrid ...
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Renewable Energy: A Comprehensive Guide to Solar (Part 2)

This is the second part to the first post in our new Renewable Energy series, where we will give the ins and outs of renewable energy that is able to be used throughout residential and commercial spaces. What is it? There are three types of solar: PV, Thermal and Hybrid ...
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building with bamboo, super natural materials, koru architects, eco architect, sustainable architect

Benefits of building with bamboo, plus examples (#SuperNaturalMaterials 6)

This is the sixth post in our Super Natural Materials series - you can view the whole series here. How can you build using bamboo? Bamboo is a type of grass, with a hard, hollow stem. It is a perennial evergreen: it grows every year and stays green year around ...
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Renewable Energy: A Comprehensive Guide to Solar (Part 1)

This is the first post in our new Renewable Energy series, where we will give the ins and outs of renewable energy that is able to be used throughout residential and commercial spaces. What is it? There are three types of solar: PV, Thermal and Hybrid. The PV stands for ...
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Benefits of building with hemp, plus examples (#SuperNaturalMaterials 5)

This is the fifth post in our Super Natural Materials series - you can view the whole series here. Hemp: a versatile material Hemp is a plant that holds extraordinary history, from its use as paper, to hemp plastic, to its versatile uses in the construction industry. Natural building materials ...
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clay plasters

Breathe easy & discover the rich natural beauty of clay plasters

This is a guest post by Clare Whitney, Clayworks  The humble clay plaster has evolved into a thing of beauty. Clay is one of the world’s most ancient building materials – and one of the most naturally abundant. It is a natural mineral, deriving predominantly from Feldspar, one of the most ...
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building with stone super natural materials

Benefits of building with stone, plus examples (#SuperNaturalMaterials 4)

This is the fourth post in our Super Natural Materials series – you can view the whole series here. Building with stone: a long history From smart townhouses to grand mansions to medieval castles to cosy worker cottages to ancient temples, building with stone stretches back to prehistoric times. It’s ...
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investing in sustainable design

3 ways investing in sustainable design pays off

Embarking on a custom-build project where you commission an architect to design your new home is a life changing decision. It’s also likely to be one of the biggest investments you will make and you need to be sure it’s a sound financial investment. Sometimes concerns about keeping costs down ...
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building with clay, super natural materials, koru architects, eco architect, sustainable architect

Benefits of building with clay, plus examples (#SuperNaturalMaterials 3)

This is the third post in our Super Natural Materials series – you can view the whole series here. The versatility of clay The use of clay dates back to the earliest human civilisation and clay bricks have been a popular building material since the Babylonian civilisation in 3000BC. The naturally ...
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Contextual design

Get planning permission for your dream home with contextual design

So many people have a vision of their dream home and have the financial capacity to make it real, but they’re held back by the fear that planners will refuse their bold plan, the neighbours will hate it and they’ll have their dream squashed before they even get started. Can ...
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Super Natural Materials zinc

Benefits of building with zinc, plus examples (#SuperNaturalMaterials 2)

This is the second post in our Super Natural Materials series - you can view the whole series here. What is zinc used for? Zinc is an abundant, lightweight and shiny metal which has long been used in construction for roofs and vertical cladding. It is perhaps most extensively used in ...
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design improves your quality of life

Good design improves your quality of life

Does good design improve your quality of life? You may think this an obvious question. Many people take it for granted that a beautiful comfortable home that suits their lifestyle and personal style will obviously make them and their family happier. But what if you’re not 100% convinced? Are you ...
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natural materials timber

Benefits of building with timber, plus examples (#SuperNaturalMaterials 1)

This post is the first in our Super Natural Materials series. Timber: a popular choice Timber is one of the most popular building materials and people have been building with timber since ancient times. Its great versatility means it’s used in all areas of construction, architecture and design – from ...
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super natural materials

#SuperNaturalMaterials Series: The Power of Natural Materials

Natural materials have superior sustainability and health benefits over artificial materials, and in many cases they're also cost competitive. As architects specialising in sustainable contemporary design, we specify natural materials such as timber, zinc, copper, wool insulation and plant-based paints in our projects as standard practice. With this new blog ...
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road ahead for green building trends

11 high-impact green building trends to watch in 2017

It’s that time of year when we all take stock and look towards the year ahead, making predictions and educated guesses about how the next 12 months will play out. So we got our heads together in the Koru Architects office and discussed the key trends we see for sustainable ...
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How to choose your renewable energy sources

You know you want your new dream home to include some green energy generation, so you can be more independent, save money in the long term, and do your bit for the planet. But how do you know what’s right for you? There’s so many factors at work in choosing ...
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Does the housing crisis threaten human rights?

Everyone needs a home to call their own. It’s a common need that people of all backgrounds share. A decent home is certainly something that every one of us wants and needs, but is it something we have a right to? In the context of the UK’s housing crisis, and ...
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Make your home uniquely sustainable with upcycling: 5 examples

Why should wine bottles be thrown in landfill, or even collected for recycling, when they could be made into a chandelier? Why throw out old car tyres when they could enjoy a new life as garden planters? Why let the council collect your used tin cans when your kids can ...
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7 ways eco workplace design will boost your profits

The myth that eco-design is 'only' about protecting our planet for future generations is beginning to break down. More and more people are pointing to the mountains of evidence that it also benefits business right here and now. While our work is motivated by passion for sustainability, this post is ...
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5 evidence-backed examples of biophilic design for schools

The physical campus has a big impact on the learning outcomes and general wellbeing of students. As concern for climate change and energy costs pushes schools and other education institutions to engage with sustainability, new research is showing the amazing benefits of biophilic design for schools and education. What is biophilic design? ...
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ecotourism, PassivPod, koru architects, eco architect, sustainable architect

Can design make ecotourism even better?

Taking holidays is an important part of modern life. Who hasn’t got through a difficult Tuesday afternoon at work by daydreaming about their next getaway? And while the typical 'fly and flop' package is still undoubtably popular, a growing number of holidaymakers are now opting for ecotourism. What is ecotourism? ...
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How to boost office productivity with biophilic design

Ensuring your employees are happily working away as they’re supposed to is clearly one of your top priorities. Yet everyone takes time off for illness or personal reasons at some point, and the culture of ‘presenteeism’ means even when people show up for work they may be unproductive due to ...
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rebuild or renovation

Renovate or rebuild? Creating your dream home

It’s a classic dilemma. You’ve purchased a scrappy run-down property in a fantastic location, with the plan to knock it down and build your dream home, but now you’re wondering if actually a major renovation will do the job. Or, perhaps you’re thinking of your current home, which is in ...
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For a healthy home, choose natural paints

Maybe you’ve been inspired by a home makeover TV show. Maybe you haven’t painted for decades and your walls are faded and peeling. Maybe you’re decorating a room for a new arrival to the family. Maybe you’re a DIY enthusiast and regularly repaint your home to keep things fresh. Whatever ...
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indoor air pollution, koru architects, eco architects

Indoor air pollution: what causes it and how to fight it

We’re all aware of the dangers of air pollution – tending to think of it as a symptom of industrial traffic-clogged cities. Images of hazy urban smog and billowing plumes from factories spring to mind. But in some cases, your house could actually have worse quality air than out on ...
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energy efficiency

Refurbishing for energy efficiency? Do these 5 things first

You know your home’s energy efficiency is not up to scratch and the idea that you’re constantly throwing money down the sink (or more likely out the window) is frustrating to say the least. And who doesn’t like a solution that saves you money while helping the planet? You have ...
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sustainable timber and forestry

13 reasons sustainable timber is the best construction material

Timber has been a popular building material since time immemorial, but with recent shock and concern over global deforestation – 13 million hectares lost per year – many people are questioning whether they should be using it. The quick answer is yes – as long as it’s from a sustainable source! Here’s ...
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zero carbon homes

All you need to know about zero carbon homes

Do you find yourself hearing the term zero carbon homes but not really knowing what it means? Parsing terminology can be confusing at times, so we've put together a little explainer on what exactly is a zero carbon home, why we need them, their typical features and benefits and the ...
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Passive Solar: the low-tech way to heat your home

Whether you’re giving your house a new lease of life with a refurb or planning your brand new dream home, getting the most bang for your buck will be a priority. Good design can save you money on your bills, create a healthier indoor environment and also reduce your carbon ...
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natural insulation, sheep wool, koru architects, eco architects, sustainable design

Think natural insulation is more expensive? Think again!

If you're interested in using natural insulation but you're worried about the cost, this article is for you. Like most people, we've become very familiar with the 'ethical premium': if you want the healthier, greener option you usually have to shell out more. But you might be happily surprised to find out ...
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Plants in classrooms, koru architects, eco architect, sustainable design, biophilic design

Why putting plants in classrooms is a fantastic idea

We all agree plants are nice to have in the garden and even in the house, but what about plants in classrooms at school? Or at university? Underpinning intuition with a slew of scientific research, the fledgling field of biophilic design is challenging people to reconsider the humble houseplant and ...
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housing bill, council flats

The Housing Bill: more political than practical

In 2016, affordable housing is clearly a national priority. But will the Housing Bill help? According to Shelter, 1.8 million British families are on waiting lists to get council housing, and 41,000 families with children were homeless this Christmas, hopping between different forms of temporary accommodation. In the private rented ...
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