We as a people should have come to a point where we realize that “green thinking” is nothing to raise our eyebrows at anymore. It’s not just some “funny” lifestyle; it is crucial and something everyone should ideally integrate into their daily lives. Our human race is responsible for the planet that we are fortunate to live on. Therefore, calling this earth home means we should treat it as our sanctuary. With this comes our obligation to care for the “health” of our living, breathing, ever-turning world, as well as future generations.  

This we can do in many ways – and it doesn’t stop at an artistic approach, on the contrary. We have the means to combine functionality with “eco” thinking. How? The role models are out there inspiring more creations.

Sustainability and Design Collide

Leading by example: the Hearst Tower in the Big Apple. On the fore of green thinking, this commercial construct, the first of its kind, situated on an office building originally erected in 1928, has been awarded the Gold LEED Certification by the “Green Building Council”.

Hearst Tower

The Hearst Building representing the interplay between sustainability and modern architecture – New York City, USA

Look at the image. The construction is proof that keeping the aesthetics despite the ecological approach – its functionality – is indeed possible. Who would have thought it was so easy? They go so seamlessly together. As is all too often, the real value lies beneath the surface: the power to reconnect with our planet by keeping it a priority in how we use its resources. The Hearst Tower proves that sustainability and design can collide in a beautiful way.

What will endure is what is uniquely human. – Jennifer Leonard

This quote shows that since humankind will always be somewhat inferior to nature’s powers, our human-made creations can only endure if we have built them using the means this earth is providing us. Hence, we need to create “our” world based on the fundament of “natural law”. Thinking “planet blue first” should be the ultimate approach to all we do in life, whether it be art or science.

The shown intertwined parts of the Hearst construction can be interpreted as our connection with nature, eventually forming a whole, functioning piece. It looks appealing from the outside and goes even deeper, as we are one whole, and each of us has a purpose to make this world “go round”, literally. The glass reflects the light, allowing the building to be flooded by the sun’s rays. Symbolically, the architects are letting “nature shine” through.

Shaping the Future of Architecture & Life

Hearst Tower Inside

Abstract angle from inside the Hearst Headquarters – New York City, USA

It is not just about the visual delight, but the thought behind it. Function and design – together, both together shape our future. Why does green thinking have to look unappealing? It doesn’t. The Hearst Tower is a role model when it comes to the combination of great architectural thinking and the underlying practicability.

Sustainability has to be a way of life to be a way of business. – Anand Mahindra

Is it about design sustainability – or sustainable design? Or is it both? The Hearst Tower prides itself with “going back to nature” by saving 26% percent of the average energy use. In addition, most of the steel used, 90% to be precise, is made from recyclable material. A large tank even allows it to recycle rainwater. Talk about a powerful “eco statement”!

Using our planet’s resources wisely to make our human world in-sync with what mother nature is providing for us, instead of using tools and materials that potentially harm and work against it, is an approach we cannot shy away from nowadays. Just like here: Let’s look and twist our perspectives. What do we need to do to make a lasting, positive impact on both this earth and, hence, our own living conditions?

The creative angle of the image represents our new outlook on “green thinking” and sustainable actions we need to take – for our planet and ourselves. By doing this earth – our home – good, we ultimately contribute to a healthier and overall better quality of life for all of us. Allow this to sink in. It will change the approach to “creating”.

The Hearst Headquarters are truly an architectural and sustainable masterpiece that should serve as an example to architects around the world.