Building renovation – a topic addressed by politics and society in equal measure. A large proportion of the office and residential buildings in Germany still do not meet modern energy efficiency requirements. But clients and users want to keep the loss of utility and rent caused by renovations as low as possible. This calls for systems that feature a high level of prefabrication and can be easily installed in the existing fabric of the building.
Joachim H. Faust - Managing Director of HPP GmbH + Co. KG
Energy-efficient modernisation is an architect's responsibility
The current public discussion regarding the thickness of insulating material on external façades is too one-sided. Today’s client will not be persuaded to invest more money in the façade of a building if lower operating costs are the »only« prospect.
Energy-efficient modernisation will be successful if, in the long term, the functionality and design of´ the modernisation is of a high quality. To achieve this, an awareness for innovation, rather than dated recipes for renovation, must predominate in the minds of everyone involved. Over the past few years, our office has designed many renovation projects, and has even converted listed buildings to meet the energy efficiency requirements of the modern age. As architects, we are always on the lookout for solutions that provide a suitable answer to the specific location and task. The industry helps us in this respect by supplying innovative products. The building envelope, roof and façade are the priorities for energy-efficient modernisation. Windows with U values of 0.8–1.4 W/m²K, highly efficient insulated profiles with narrow face widths and integrated fittings, triple glazing with a high level of daylight penetration, external and wind-resistant solar shading, thermal insulation in the glazing rebate, etc. are important innovations. The industry has developed system solutions and products for façades in particular which offer comprehensive, meaningful solutions in terms of technology, energy savings and architectural design. Thermal insulation on its own, therefore, is not the decisive factor, but rather solutions which minister to the appearance and function of a building, thus satisfying the requirements of the clients and users. Ready-made solutions are of little help here; it is the optimised interplay of innovative solutions which achieves the desired results.