What are the opportunities of using biophilic design as a framework for regenerative and climate positive design? This paper explores how Terrapin’s 15 Patterns of Biophilic Design can be used as a nature-based framework to shift from an anthropocentric to a biocentric mindset to foster health and wellbeing for all species. The learning goals, organization, assignments, qualitative and quantitative methods and tools will be compared using the outcomes of two separate design studios: an experiential-based undergraduate Biophilic Design Studio and a performance-based graduate Biophilic Net-Positive Design Studio. The undergraduate Biophilic Design Studio uses Terrapin’s 15 Patterns to develop a team case study of one of six Maggie’s Centres for nonmedical cancer care. Next, individual design interventions are applied to the facility in a new geographic location to investigate how place, bioclimate, flora, fauna, and culture informs design at the site, building, envelope, and room scales. The graduate Biophilic Net-Positive Design Studio investigates a local client-based project for a Center for Health and Wellbeing on the university campus. Students integrate the 15 Patterns of Biophilic Design and Architecture 2030 Energy Hierarchy (1. Passive design, 2. High performance systems, and 3. Renewable energy) to explore through iterative design scenarios and parametric analyses how qualitative experiential and atmospheric design strategies and quantitative performance metrics and assessment tools for energy and greenhouse gas emissions can be integrated to support human and planetary health and well-being. The lessons and outcomes of the two studios reveal the ease with which biophilic design can be used to enhance regenerative and climate-positive design strategies. The 15 Patterns of Biophilic Design help to awaken students to the design potentials of place, rich sensory experiences, and a more engaged relationship with other species, nature, and natural forces for the benefit of all life.
Mary Guzowski is a Professor in the School of Architecture at the University of Minnesota where she teaches and conducts research related to daylighting, solar, biophilic, and regenerative design. Her publications include the books Art of Architectural Daylighting: Design and Technology (Laurence King); Towards Zero Energy Architecture: New Solar Design (Laurence King); and Daylighting for Sustainable Design (McGraw Hill). She has also published a variety of web-based design resources and scholarly and professional articles. She chaired the development of MS Sustainable Design Program in the School of Architecture, was a primary author of the first edition of the Minnesota Sustainable Design Guide (with John Carmody, Center for Sustainable Building Research) and the Carbon Neutral Design Project (with Jim Wasley, University of Wisconsin and Terri Boake, University of Waterloo). Mary’s recent research has focused on biophilic approaches to daylighting, solar architecture, and net-positive design. She is currently collaborating with colleagues on the Biophilic Net-Positive Design Project to investigate the opportunities across design disciplines and scales. Mary has received awards from the American Institute of Architect’s Committee on the Environment, American Institute of Architects Minnesota, and the Associate Collegiate Schools of Architecture for her contributions to design education.