It would appear that sustainability in architecture and great design are still largely mutually exclusive, according to a recent stoush between the American Institute of Architects and Aaron Bestky of Dezeen.

In a recent article on Dezeen, Bestky slammed the AIA for its inclusion of ‘ugly’ architecture in its Top Ten Awards in Sustainability, saying that celebrating sustainable but ugly design does not motivate architects to design beautiful and sustainable projects.

In its response to Mr Bestky, Mary Ann Lazarus of the AIA defends the awards, stating that the inclusion of sustainability awards encourages architects to think more about sustainability as being part of the design process. She acknowledges that the profession has a ways to go before design firms ‘reconcile their aesthetic aspirations with performance outcomes’.

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