Permaculture design is basically a multi-faceted and environmentally harmonious, fully integrated method for creating designs for human-focused landscapes. The local environment of a permaculture design will be capable of supplying many essential necessities of a human family unit or larger community efficiently and with use of principles of sustainability. In integrated design, efforts are centered on inter-connecting all elements in a system by successful alignment of the outputs of one element to the inputs of a second element with high levels of efficiency and no waste.

Permaculture design also works with natural harmonies to revitalize degraded land and form natural systems for supporting human beings living on the earth. Permaculture includes many different disciplines, such as soil science, hydrology, engineering, biology, climate, geology, geography and architecture. Permaculture designers are considered to be generalists possessing basic understanding of many disciplines and their practical use and relevance. This perspective enables these generalist designers to envision a broad, comprehensive view, or meta-picture of a large, interconnected network or system.   

How Permaculture Design is Related to Architectural Planning

Permaculture design has a basic connection to architectural planning and design because it is focused on the following essential design elements: 

• Mainframe Design. Mainframe design is frequently the beginning point for Permaculture designs projects because it examines all aspects of the big picture. The mainframe is composed of identifications and designs for the primary features of a future human landscape. The primary features are water, access and structures. In Permaculture design, emphasis is placed on optimizing our interactions with water while it cycles through the landscape with the active functions of slow, spread and sink.

Basic rules for access design include crossing valleys along dam or pond walls whenever feasible, traveling a landscape on contour when possible and ascending or descending landscapes following ridge lines to avoid erosion. In terms of structure, by permitting the pattern of a physical land site to rule, we will have a well-situated, effective and efficient dwelling in harmony with nature.    

• Sector Analysis. Sector analysis works with the current of steady incoming energies to our site, which cannot be avoided. This is because they are exterior energies that do not originate onsite and are not controlled on the site.     

• Zone Planning. Zone planning uses a location-related approach to elements that we may desire to include in a Permaculture design. It is not merely a manner of approaching and studying energy needs of components for proper placement in proximity to major habitation areas of the overall design, but requires a creative style of placement as well as scientific considerations. These zones are not fixed. 

• Workflows. Workflows, or “lifeflows,” are important design aspects of creating an entire lifestyle, or Permaculture design. Designing for workflows entails using an imaginative viewpoint to envision how we might interact with this newly created site on a daily, monthly or yearly schedule.    

• Analysing and Connecting Components. Analysing and connecting components involves noting all of the needs and products or behaviours of each component of a system. By doing this, we can start to comprehend how various components may interact so that we may begin to envision the connecting of these components to form a “holistic” design that is functionally integrated.  

When you contact the international architectural design consultancy of Marchese Partners, you will receive excellent, comprehensive advice and information concerning Permaculture design and its connection to architectural planning. Led by Founding Principal and Chairman, Eugene Marchese, Marchese Partners has offices in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, Auckland, NZ, London, UK, and additional global locations.

With numerous highly successful current and completed contemporary design projects in worldwide locations, our highly regarded, innovative architectural design firm leads the way into advanced architectural venues for today and the future.