meet the architect

John Christophers, architect of the Zero Carbon House, Birminghamzero carbon house was designed by John Christophers.  John is an associate at Associated Architects in Birmingham UK, but zero carbon house was designed independently as his own family home.

He says: “I’ve been interested in environmental issues almost all my adult life.

“When I was in my twenties, I worked in Africa doing low cost self-build housing, which helped form my political outlook on the world. Coming back, I became aware that development issues and global issues were linked not so much to policies in Africa but to a lack of understanding back in the West.

“And it seemed to me at the time – I’m talking about the eighties – that green issues, which were often regarded as fringe issues then, were in fact very central issues to a global outlook. So those issues have been very important to me since, and my architectural thesis looked particularly at energy and green building issues.

“I’ve developed my interest in sustainable architecture throughout my work with Associated Architects. I’ve worked variously as architect, associate and partner of the company for 30 years on a variety of award-winning and low energy buildings.”

In 2005, Associated Architects won the national RIBA Sustainability award for Cobtun in Worcester, a home with a curved wall made from earth. Cobtun was described by the architectural critic Deyan Sudjic in The Observer as “an advertisement as much for the pleasure to be had in building…as a manifesto for sustainability.”

Some of John’s other projects with Associated Architects, educational, arts, residential, performing arts and urban regeneration, include:

2015: King’s School, Hawford: UK’s first MultiComfort building (PassivHaus +)

2013 Space, King’s School, Worcester
Birmingham Museums & Art Gallery, Staffordshire Hoard Gallery

2012 The Michael Baker Boathouse, King’s School, Worcester: Architects Journal Sustainable building of the year, 2013

2011 27ha Selly Oak Hospital, Birmingham: Masterplan for sustainable re-development.
Zero Carbon PassivHaus vicarages, Diocese of Worcester: England’s first zero carbon PassivHaus homes

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