George Wade

BSc (Hons) Architecture

I'm retraining in architecture having previously worked in IT and Business Analysis. I thrive on helping others, problem solving, and getting things done. I'm also an experienced joiner and run a small workshop. Practical, pragmatic, relaxed, and enthusiastic, my main architectural interests are atmospheres, passive environmental design, and natural materials. I want to learn how to create truly sustainable, healthy spaces and buildings that engage people. I also think we should be retrofitting what we have rather than demolishing and building from scratch.

My project this year is a design for an ecological data centre. The idea came from considering the future of transport in Coventry and how much automation would be involved, and I was inspired by the AM4 Data Centre in Amsterdam which heats nearby homes with its waste heat. In a world where everything has a microchip and people increasingly live online, what is the ecological cost of the data that drives it all? Perhaps the trend toward vast, energy hungry, centralised 'cloud' data centres should be reconsidered in favour of smaller, greener, more local infrastructure – in much the same way that decentralised energy and water management is starting to make a lot of sense.

Info tech now accounts for 10% of global energy consumption, with higher emissions than all air traffic - if you include the energy cost of your data, the average smartphone uses 20% more power than a modern fridge per year.
Project Brief and Concept
Proposed Site Plan at 1:500
South Elevation and Facade, and roof top plant nursery
North elevation, courtyard, and data centre
West elevation with reimagined modernist facade of the existing central buildings