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Gaia Architects


Allergen Free Housing for the 21st Century,
Senate Suite, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow
Thursday, May 16th 2002 9.30am - lunch

A vitally important seminar for policy makers, housing specialists, clients and architects involved in health & welfare, housing design, access, procurement and remediation.

The project partners are concerned to promote a better understanding of the role of buildings in allergy and to ensure that the same attention is given in housing design to breathing related disability, as with other forms of disability. Action on the subject is timely, because of the significant rise in asthma and because of ongoing discussions about how changes to the Building Regulations might promote sustainable construction & sustainable development. A number of past reviews have suggested that radical changes to the scope of the Regulations might be required if the health of occupants and the environment is to be secured & improved. The problem can no longer be ignored.

See the Seminar Flyer (PDF) for more details. (Or click here for the HTML version of the Seminar Flyer

The seminar is sponored by BAXI.

Low Allergy Housing

Gaia Research are working together with Gaia Architects to develop an affordable low allergy building specification which avoids where possible known and suspected building related allergens.

The design also aims to minimise the environmental conditions in which building related allergens can have an adverse impact.

The research which is supported by research funding from the RIBA is a development of a long standing interest in selection of healthy materials in relation to the indoor environment and also their impact on the wider world.

The project aims to raise the profile of breathing related disability to a level where it is given the same importance in building design as is presently the case for access for the physically disadvantaged.

The principles of a healthy indoor climate already applied in a number of housing and sports projects (see Leslie Court and McLaren) are being developed further for a housing project which will incorporate two low-allergen units.

The project is supported by RIBA

Further funding is presently being sought to evaluate the design and performance of the low allergy housing by comparison of housing with a low allergy specification and a control house of standard specification. This would allow us to develop guidance on replicable, affordable housing that will achieve a higher level of health and welfare for allergy sufferers than housing built to minimum standard regulations.

It would be a major contribution to developing existing knowledge on the role of building design in reducing allergy and to enabling sufferers to live relatively normal lives..

The project fits within a range of advocacy and design work undertaken by Gaia Research, Gaia Architects and Gaia Planning.

Arundel, Anthony, 'Indirect Health Effects of Relatve Humidity in Indoor Environments',
Environmental Health Perspectives, Vol 65 pp351-361, 1986.


 GaiaGroup : Gaia Research : Advocacy & Design : Low Allergy Housing : Back

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