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date: 20 June 2021

p. 1125. Light and airlocked

p. 1125. Light and airlocked

  • Adam Sharr


The development of air-conditioning and fluorescent tubes meant that decent lighting and ventilation could be provided artificially rather than naturally. Accommodation could then be placed further from windows, enabling buildings to become deeper in plan. This made buildings cheaper, because the amount of external wall—the most expensive part—could be reduced in relation to the overall floor area. ‘Light and air’ explains how General Motor’s research and design campus in Michigan, designed by Eero Saarinen, was an early example of their integration. It also highlights the work of inventor, author, and ‘futurologist’ Richard Buckminster Fuller, and his designs for prefabricated houses and geodesic domes.

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