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Parametric Design

Previously, individual, three-dimensional free-form façades entailed numerous special constructions. Introduced at BAU two years ago as a prototype, the Parametric System presented by Schüco this year is ready for series production. From planning and fabrication through to installation, this solution offers an end-to-end, digital data chain.

Kory Bieg - OTA+ The University of Texas, Austin/USA

Parametric design has transformed the way we conceptualise and construct buildings. Using computational design tools, we are able to translate ideas into a language that can be understood across disciplines and shared between project constituents.

Each discipline is integrated from the outset, allowing all parties to share information, best practices and knowledge at each stage of the design, resulting in more opportunities and increased productivity whilst limiting potential conflict and errors. By building a better network between designers, clients, builders and manufacturers, each can contribute to the design process in a way that would previously have been inconceivable. Parametric design has allowed architects to take advantage of the accuracy afforded by computational design tools to introduce more complexity into a project and participate in more of the building process. As opposed to standardisation – where the advantages stem from mass manufacturing of similar parts and repetitive assemblies – parametric design offers the possibility of mass customisation. Every building component can be designed and fabricated individually, to best meet the performative, aesthetic and tectonic requirements at a particular location in a building, alleviating redundancy and saving time and money through material and energy efficiencies. Furthermore, parametric design software has allowed designers to better manage large amounts of project data. Through computer simulation and real-time feedback, we can analyse a building’s performance better, increasing the sophistication and complexity of a design. The design advantages afforded to architects have also benefited the building industry. Builders feel more confident using new construction practices that at one time would have been too risky. Manufacturers have begun to work directly with designers on the fabrication and delivery of one-off products, opening up new markets and delivering products that better serve their consumers. Though parametric design is still in its infancy, there is already greater collaboration. Over the next decade and beyond, it will become more pervasive and have an even greater impact on building design and construction. Parametric design will be understood not only as a tool, but as a way of thinking.

Kory Bieg

Judith Lennartz - Student (MA) TU Munich /GER

Greater feasibility of innovative solutions

PROFILE: In your opinion, how significant are the design possibilities created by freeform parametric shapes?
Judith Lennartz: It’s definitely an advantage for a project if a company can offer something like that. As far as I can judge, there are not that many of those. And, of course, carrying it off economically in all of the detail is fantastic for an architectural practice.
PROFILE: Will individualised industrial production influence architecture?
Judith Lennartz: That’s a difficult topic. There are those who love it and those who hate it. I think generally it makes innovative building designs more feasible. Extraordinary forms which would´ otherwise surely have been unsuccessful for the lack of an industrial partner who can make them work on a large scale.

Morvarid Sarvghadi - Ryerson University, Canada

One system, more creativity

PROFILE: What do you find most interesting at the Schüco stand?
Morvarid Sarvghadi: The most appealing aspect of this exhibition is the parametric system. It is really interesting. It opens up a lot of new opportunities for the ideas that the designers have. In the world of architecture and design, there are a lot of restrictions when it comes to actually executing our
ideas. This is a step forward, moving towards a direction we can actually use to our advantage in terms of being more creative.
PROFILE: Do you like the possibility of building a 3D façade with one single system?
Morvarid Sarvghadi: Definitely, yes. That's the most interesting aspect of all. Two years ago Schüco presented the prototype of the parametric system, and I know that people really
welcomed it. So now that it really can be used, I'm excited to see what architects will do with it.

Walter Gürtner - Owner and Managing Director of Neumayr High-Tech Fassaden GmbH Eggenfelden/GER

Security the most important factor

In order to implement innovative façade solutions, developers need a strong and reliable industrial partner by their side. In this connection, great emphasis is placed on the topic of security – even if this involves additional costs.

PROFILE: How can Schüco contribute to the development of a sustainable, intelligent building envelope?
Walter Gürtner: I think that Schüco is already doing everything in its power to that end. Many of my colleagues find it impossible to comprehend how you can forge ahead with so many technical developments at the same time. In this respect, I believe that Schüco is the undisputed number one and absolutely on the right track to secure market leadership for many years.
PROFILE: Do you have a favourite system that you like to use?
Walter Gürtner: I prefer to use the system which allows us to earn the most money. Even if Schüco does not exactly provide systems which help you to save money, for me security is the most important aspect in today’s façade market. Schüco guarantees that. If we encounter difficulties, we need a partner who will stand by our side. And Schüco is absolutely the right choice in this regard.



»Personally, I can certainly imagine using a parametric, modular façade.« Sigrid Hintersteininger Architects, Stuttgart/GER
With the façade innovation in series production, freeform 3D façades can be created for the first time as a system solution.