In response to the building sector's enormous contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions, the Regenerative Architecture Lab (ReAL) researches alternative and renewable building materials that shift construction industry from current "take, make, waste" practices to those that fit within a circular economy.
"Alternative" in this context should be understood as atypical, uncommon, and oftentimes still in development. ReAL is primarily a space for research and hands-on experimentation with cultivated and regenerative alternative building materials that positively impact the natural environment as well as the health of users, producers, and builders. The lab supports the production and testing of alternative materials as well as familiarization and data collection. It contributes to Cornell AAP's growing material library, a resource for teaching, practice, and demonstration as we work in collaboration with manufacturers, stakeholders, and clients in the building industry.