Julia Bourke
director ARCH 405

Links to Collaborators







site & program

work structure






THEME:  collaborative learning/collaborative living
An interdisciplinary approach to SUSTAINABLE STUDENT HOUSING DESIGN

Ecological, sustainable design will provide the methodological and technical focus of this studio.

This term we will have the unprecedented opportunity to collaborate with students and faculty from Urban Planning, Engineering and Environmental Studies on the topic of sustainable housing. Five courses including this architecture studio will address the real-life concerns of MUCS, a McGill student organization dedicated to realizing a sustainable student housing project. Students from each course will share their respective research in an interdisciplinary learning process in which architecture will play a pivotal role as the confluence of technical, social and environmental concerns. The whole group will be invited to come together at various points throughout the term both for formal presentations and informal discussions. Professors' lectures of general interest will also be highlighted for group participation, and linked web sites will assist information sharing.

Another unprecedented aspect of this studio will be the participation of sustainable engineering consultant Ronald Gagnon as a part-time studio instructor. Through lectures and desk crits Ronald will provide invaluable critiques and technical input during the design process.

Ronald Gagnon, Concept R

"Urban Planning Projects III" (604), Professors Brown, Badami (3-5 students)
"Mechanical Engineering Project" (305-463D), Professors Mongrain, Radziszewski (6 students)
"Building Change Through Sustainable Communities" (480A), Professor Sarwer-Foner (18 students)
"Internalizing the Full Costs of Demolition: The Case of Benny Farm" (401), Professor Badami (5-7 students)

(McGill Urban Community Sustainment) Spencer Mann, Coordinator 398-1829

Julia Bourke
, Fiset Miller Bourke architectes, studio director
MT: rm 308 Macdonald-Harrington Building   tel: 398-7470    julia.bourke@mcgill.ca
WRF: 460 Ste Catherine W #303   tel: 931-7501   jb.fmbarch@bellnet.ca

Ronald Gagnon, Concept R (consultant)   conceptr@sorel-tracv.gc.ca   tel: 450-780-0608

Environmentally conscious building requires the architect to think about the relation between the building and the ecological and climatological system within which the building functions. In a wider sense the architect must take a standpoint on the relation between nature and culture. Opposing nature against culture can never lead to durable solutions for our current environment problems. We have to search for a meaningful symbiosis.
 - Smart architecture: http://www.smartarch.nl/ authors: Jacques Vink and Piet Vollaard

Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
- World Commission on Environment and Development, Our Common Future, Oxford University Press,  New York, 1987, pg. 43.

Arising out of an increasing awareness of the inadequacies and negative effects of past choices and related choice mechanisms, sustainable development is ultimately concerned with assuring human health and well-being now and in the future. Human existence depends on our ability to draw sustenance from natural resources in ways which do not destroy the natural systems which regenerate Earth. Throughout history humans have impacted the regions in which they have lived. Until recently, populations were small and the impacts localized; the design and management of the community had effects only on the sustainability of the local region. Since the industrial revolution, however, the growth in industrial technology and activity, combined with the exponential growth in population and the associated impacts of a growing consumption-driven society, have become a threat to the stability and longevity of the earthÝs regional and planet-scale ecosystems. Sustainable development is a call for increased understanding of, and response to, the long term environmental, social and economic effects of current development and lifestyle patterns.
- Sustainable Community Planning and Development.CMHC Research Report, p.3

We look at design as a signal of intention. And we look in the future and say that the filters of the future will not be on the end of pipes. They will be in our heads.
- William McDonough, 2000