How McGill Architecture Researchers Use Drupal & Data Vizualisation to Innovate The Housing Circular Economy


This talk with introduce a new web application name Data Homebase founded by Naomi Keena and Avi Friedman of McGill's School of Architecture. One approach to tackling housing supply is the circular economy (CE). CE is when materials and buildings are kept in use for as long as possible to reduce waste and promote sustainability, and end of life building material is reused, rather than turned to waste. However, effective CE decision-making requires robust, building data. Unfortunately, this is currently scattered and lacks standardization. To overcome this barrier, the McGill University researchers have proposed to develop ‘housing passports’ (HP) - standardized digital descriptions of residential building characteristics. Each HP will represent different residential typologies based on analysis of existing building stock. Through a new web-based, data visualization web application named Data Homebase, HP information will be organized, linked, and visualized in a manner that makes it easily accessible to a wide variety of housing stakeholders, from building sector, to financial and policymaking actors. For example, HPs could help banks complete property assessments and could support cities with asset management of government housing.