This collaborative project for the History of the Global Environment synthesized course content and independent research into an original 'book' consisting of text, sourced images and original graphics.The book focuses on purposeful design – buildings that were intentionally designed for a particular function. The three functions chosen are religion, government and community. In depth research was conducted to draw parallels that tie together buildings from different time periods, places and cultures. This was to examine how buildings with similar functions have multiple commonalities such as the response to context, treatment of public and private spaces, innovations in construction, etc. Research also focused on how these buildings treated the design intents differently. The excerpt is a chapter from the section on religion that compares The Cardboard Cathedral designed by Shigeru Ban, built in New Zealand in 2013 to St. Paul’s Cathedral designed by Christopher Wren, built in London in 1675. The comparison is between religious buildings that became icons within the respective context in response to a natural disaster, looking at structure, symbolism and style.