When choosing a site for a building project, architects and project administrators sometimes have a choice between a Greenfield or a brownfield site.
There are advantages and disadvantages to Greenfield and brownfield sites. The site chosen will depend on the scope of your project, the client’s budget, and whether you have a group of experts on your team that understand how to design for each.
But what is a Greenfield project, exactly, and is it really the best option for your next construction project?
What is a Greenfield project’s primary advantage? It is a blank slate that gives architects the freedom to be more innovative and forward-thinking when planning site development.
Further to this, it offers more opportunity to design community-focused projects. Greenfield sites are typically located in residential or suburban areas. These locations are perfect for building healthcare facilities that community members can easily access.
Additionally, Greenfield projects have increased ease of compliance with environmental and sustainability standards. It will be easier to create an environmentally conscientious space when you don’t have to focus your time, efforts, and money on decontaminating the area.
On the other end of the spectrum, the disadvantages of choosing a Greenfield site would be site costs and terrain considerations could pose as a deciding factor. Greenfield land can be more expensive to purchase, especially when in a desirable location. Architects and engineers will also have to develop utility systems from scratch, which can be costly and time-consuming. Furthermore, many Greenfield sites have never been built on, so architects might have to design around natural slopes and hills or level out the terrain.