Open Access Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington
thesis_access.pdf (38.98 MB)

Remediation Architecture - A Spatial Approach to Bioremediation

Download (38.98 MB)
posted on 2021-04-26, 21:34 authored by Ellison, Lewis

Phenomena such as industrialisation and urbanisation

are associated with the built environment. Both contribute to

pollution of urban soil, water and air in various ways. This in turn

contributes in part to climate change and biodiversity loss. It

is therefore the responsibility of the built environment, and the

professionals associated with its design and functioning, to

remediate the aforementioned effects.

This research investigates the spatial arrangement of

bioremediation techniques (the process of using fungus,

bacteria, and plants to break down and purify environmental

pollutants) within architecture in order to remediate brownfield

sites to a state where they contribute to a regenerative built


This investigation utilises a design-led research approach

of examining the spatial arrangement of bioremediation

techniques within architecture and proposes a series of design

interventions at one of New Zealand’s most contaminated

sites. This research proposes practical methods of applying

restoration design to remediate brownfield sites to move

towards a regenerative development model. The land and

waterways that make up brownfield sites should be celebrated

for their ecological significance, and remediated, rather than

ignored so as to build positive human-nature relationships.

Research findings include that bioremediation and

architecture cannot exist separately if brownfield site

remediation and development is to contribute to a regenerative

built environment. It is critical to use architecture itself as one

means of educating users about the ecological processes

of brownfield site bioremediation. This is important in order

to establish a stewardship role within individuals and local

communities as a way to work towards the protection and

successful restoration of these degraded sites. This research

also found that the restoration of brownfield sites towards

regenerative development requires architecture and built

environment infrastructure to be adaptive to future climate

change conditions. The bioremediation techniques examined

in this research could be used to retrofit existing buildings and

designed into new additions and/or retrofits so that architecture

can adapt to climate change impacts, particularly sea-level rise

and increased storm surge.


Copyright Date


Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline


Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Master of Architecture (Professional)

ANZSRC Type Of Activity code

Wellington School of Architecture

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

Wellington School of Architecture


Pedersen Zari, Maibritt