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ARC 606: Arch Design Studio 6

University at Buffalo

Course Description:

The Design for Disassembly (DfD) Studio aims to familiarize students with effective practices and methodologies for designing buildings with disassembly in mind. Knowledge acquisition occurs through field research, design through making, and computational modeling and life cycle assessment of the prototypes. In DfD Studio, students work in groups of three and kick-off the term by exploring material recovery requirements and layering techniques, aiming to conceptualize various structural systems with dimensions and joinery systems conducive to adaptation and re-use across multiple life cycles. They immerse themselves in Design for Disassembly (DfD) techniques through prototyping. As the term progresses, students develop prototypes of two structural and shell systems, with the second prototype primarily constructed from re-used materials sourced from the first iteration. This approach enables students to comprehend and apply design strategies that elongate the life-span of buildings, thereby minimizing their carbon footprint through multiple cycles.

The second structural system may feature variations in function, dimensions, and form compared to the initial one, allowing for minor modifications to integrate disassembled components into the new structural design. To validate the practical implementation of this concept, student teams are assigned the task of disassembling their initial systems, making necessary adjustments to structural components, and utilizing them in the assembly of their second system.


After thoughtfully and rigorously engaging in the work of this course, students should be able to:

·         Gain a conceptual and technical understanding of DfD principles and suitable implementation strategies (Assess through projects 1, 2, 3)

·         Develop an inventive “research through making” trajectory that contributes to combating climate change by reducing buildings’ carbon footprint (Assess through projects 2 and 3)

·         Translate conceptual and technical understanding of DfD principles into digital and physical models (Assess through projects 1, 2, 3)

·         Collaborating with peers (Assess through projects 1, 2, 3)

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