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Civil-Comp Proceedings
ISSN 1759-3433
CCP: 96
Edited by: B.H.V. Topping and Y. Tsompanakis
Paper 30

A Sustainability Appraisal Framework for the Design of Steel-Framed Buildings

A.H. Oti and W. Tizani

Department of Civil Engineering, University of Nottingham, United Kingdom

Full Bibliographic Reference for this paper
A.H. Oti, W. Tizani, "A Sustainability Appraisal Framework for the Design of Steel-Framed Buildings", in B.H.V. Topping, Y. Tsompanakis, (Editors), "Proceedings of the Thirteenth International Conference on Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering Computing", Civil-Comp Press, Stirlingshire, UK, Paper 30, 2011. doi:10.4203/ccp.96.30
Keywords: sustainability, life cycle costing, ecological footprint, carbon footprint, steel-framed buildings.

In recent times, the criteria considered in the design of structures have moved forward from structural integrity, constructability and cost to include sustainability. For the building artefact, sustainability has been related to the building life cycle. As terms related to sustainability emerge, they have been applied to various aspects of the building life cycle with a view to define its sustainability. Life cycle costing, ecological footprint and carbon footprint have been at the forefront. Researchers have argued that using these indicators to guide project decisions at the conceptual design stage could maximize their benefits [1,2]. In the same line, a framework to combine these three indicators in estimating the sustainability of a steel-framed building is proposed. The framework uses life cycle costing to represent economic sustainability and the environmental aspect by a combination of ecological footprint and carbon footprint measures. An implementation of the framework is intended in a computer-integrated environment.

The implementation is dependent on significant amount of data and knowledge base. This encompasses methods of construction and fabrication of steel materials, associated costs, life cycle information; combined with the application methodologies of the selected sustainability indicators. The research takes advantage of the object-oriented application of C# in the .NET Framework environment to implement the proposed framework.

For the building, there is a challenge in quantifying sustainability. This has been an impediment to incorporating sustainability as a criteria to guide the building design process at the level of various professional platforms [3]. As a result of a high energy requirement considered to be associated with the 'use' phase, attention has been focused on the service engineer's energy optimization and profiling systems. However, revelations of embodied energy and carbon in construction materials [4] and the dependencies of professional platform-specific designs or specifications present the need for a more holistic approach to sustainable construction. This requires collaboration, though with various professional platforms thinking along the lines of their peculiar responsibilities in the project process and unifying the different platform-based sustainability ratings at salient project stages. Geared towards the efforts on developing sustainable design methodology in civil engineering, this paper presented a proposed sustainability modelling framework to inform the structural engineer on conceptual design-decisions.

N. Kohler, S. Moffatt, "Life cycle analysis of the built environment", in "Sustainable building and construction", UNEP Industry and Environment, 17-21, 2003.
G.K.C. Ding, "Sustainable construction-role of environmental assessment tools", Environment and Management, 86, 451-464, 2008. doi:10.1016/j.jenvman.2006.12.025
A. Sarja, "Integrated life cycle design of structures", Taylor & Francis, 2002. doi:10.4324/9780203302347
G.P. Hammond, C.I. Jones, "Embodied energy and carbon in construction materials", Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers - Energy, 161(2), 87-98, 2008. doi:10.1680/ener.2008.161.2.87

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