RIBA report shows sustainability is now mainstream

Wed 13 Jan 2016

The RIBA Future Housing Design Trends survey provides evidence that sustainability and energy conservation are continuing to rise up the agenda for housing clients and are now very much mainstream rather than niche interests.

A majority of their respondents are anticipating that they will be asked to specify more sustainable materials and products in the future. In relation to energy conservation, many respondents state that they are seeing a greater emphasis from clients on a “fabric first” approach, with 70% forecasting an increase in the use of advanced insulation products over the next twelve months, and we are witnessing Passivhaus emerge as a popular low energy standard for housing.

Clients are still engaging with more active energy features as well, but are perhaps becoming more discerning and dispassionate in analysing options, so that 66% of our participating architects are forecasting an increase in the use of solar/PV panels whereas on balance our survey predicts a decrease in interest in domestic wind turbines.