Norman Foster Foundation Cities: Affordable Housing Workshop 2022

Susana Saiz during her seminar at the Norman Foster Foundation’s library Page 40 How we ensure we achieve sustainable and health principles in the design process of a building? How we measure something so abstract as well-being? Are some of the questions posed by Susana Saiz in her seminar. Out of the seventeen sustainable developing goals of the United Nations, Housing is critical for thirteen of them, stated Saiz, it is crucial in terms of health, educations and standard of living. Saiz explained how the concept of health that has typically been explored is only related to physical health, but that it should be understood more holistically in relation with the environment we live in, the nutrition as well as the psychological and social aspects. There are five determinants of health, genetics, behaviors, environmental and physical influences, medical care and social factors. Saiz emphasised how the built environment affects the physical, mental and social well-being, more specifically how the building design, components and materials could help achieve a healthier city. The urban environment affects mobility, contact with nature, healthy nutrition and other aspects that directly influence physical and mental health. Through different diagram, Saiz showed the strategies to create healthy cities by integrating green systems and increasing the relation with nature as a productive system. Wellbeing in the built environment can be measured through different lenses and parameters, the physical determinants of health like green space, ventilation, lighting and air quality, mental health perception that is more difficult to measure. Saiz emphasised that there are many health-oriented certification schemes to guide the designers in the key aspects needed to be taken care of to achieve healthy buildings and environments and the meaning of healthy building is about understanding the impact of all environmental conditions on the health of humans. Saiz concluded her seminar by stating that the objective is to promote a new design model of Affordable Housing putting the people at the center, building sustainable homes, rooted in place for future generations. Sustainable and Healthy Social Housing Susana Saiz 2022 Cities: Affordable Housing Workshop Contents Report