More than half of the urban population in Romania lives today in residential buildings made out of large prefabricated reinforced concrete panels. Since their initial design was made in the 1960’s, these housing units are now being technically and morally outdated, consuming large amounts of energy for heating, cooling, ventilation and lighting, while failing to meet the needs of the contemporary life-style. Due to their widespread use, the design of a system that improves their energy efficiency would have a real impact, not only on the energy consumption of the residential sector, but also on the quality of life that it offers. Furthermore, with the transition of today’s existing power grid to a “smart grid”, buildings could become an active element for future electricity networks by contributing in micro-generation and energy storage. One of the most addressed issues today is to find locally adapted strategies that can be applied considering the 20-20-20 EU policy criteria and to offer sustainable and innovative solutions for the cost-optimal energy performance of buildings adapted on the existing local market. This paper presents a possible adaptive design scenario towards sustainable retrofitting of these housing units. The apartments are transformed in order to meet the current living requirements and additional extensions are placed on top of the building, replacing the unused roof space, acting not only as housing units, but as active solar energy collection systems. An adaptive building envelope is ensured in order to achieve overall air-tightness and an elevator system is introduced to facilitate access to the upper levels.
Conservation of historical urban patterns in the traditional neighborhoods is a part of creating integrated urban environments that are socially more sustainable. Urbanization reflects on life conditions and social, physical, economical characteristics of the society. In this regard, historical zones and traditional regions are affected by dramatic interventions on these characteristics. This article focuses on the Uch Dukkan neighborhood located in Ardabil City in Azarbaijani region of Iran, which has been up to such interventions that leaded its transformation from the past to the present. After introducing a brief inventory of the main elements of the historical zone and the neighborhood; this study explores the changes and transformations in different periods; and their impacts on the quality of the environment and its social sustainability. The survey conducted in the neighborhood as part of this research study revealed that the Uch Dukkan neighborhood and the unique architectural heritage that it possesses have become more inactive physically and functionally in a decade. This condition requires an exploration and comparison of the present and the expected transformations of the meaning of social space from the most private unit to the urban scale. From this token, it is argued that an architectural point of view that is based on space order; use and meaning of space as a social and cultural image, should not be ignored. Based on the interplay between social sustainability, collective memory, and the urban environment, study aims to make the invisible portion of ignorance clear, that ends up with a weakness in defining the collective meaning of the neighborhood as a historic urban district. It reveals that the spatial possessions of the neighborhood are valuable not only for their historical and physical characteristics, but also for their social memory that is to be remembered and constructed further.
Many public housing properties developed by local governments in Taiwan in the 1980s have deteriorated severely as these rental apartment buildings aged. The lack of building maintainability considerations during project design phase as well as insufficient maintenance funds have made it difficult and costly for local governments to maintain and keep public housing properties in good shape. In order to assist the local governments in achieving and delivering sustainable public housing, this paper intends to present a developed design evaluation method to be used to evaluate the presented design schemes from property management and financial feasibility perspectives during project design phase of public housing projects. The design evaluation results, i.e. the property management and financial implications of presented design schemes that could occur later during the building operation and maintenance phase, will be reported to the client (the government) and design schemes revised consequently. It is proposed that the design evaluation be performed from two main perspectives: (1) Operation and property management perspective: Three criteria such as spatial appropriateness, people and vehicle circulation and control, property management working spaces are used to evaluate the ‘operation and PM effectiveness’ of a design scheme. (2) Financial feasibility perspective: Four types of financial analyses are performed to assess the long term financial feasibility of a presented design scheme, such as operational and rental income analysis, management fund analysis, regular operational and property management service expense analysis, capital expense analysis. The ongoing Chung-Li Public Housing Project developed by the Taoyuan City Government will be used as a case to demonstrate how the presented design evaluation method is implemented. The results of property management assessment as well as the annual operational and capital expenses of a proposed design scheme are presented.
This paper describes in details a commercial green building that has been designed and constructed in Marsa Matrouh, Egypt. The balance between homebuilding and the sustainable environment has been taken into consideration in the design and construction of this building. The building consists of one floor with 3 m height and 2810 m2 area while the envelope area is 1400 m2. The building construction fulfills the natural ventilation requirements. The glass curtain walls are about 50% of the building and the windows area is 300 m2. 6 mm greenish gray tinted temper glass as outer board lite, 6 mm safety glass as inner board lite and 16 mm thick dehydrated air spaces are used in the building. Visible light with 50% transmission, 0.26 solar factor, 0.67 shading coefficient and 1.3 W/m2.K thermal insulation U-value are implemented to realize the performance requirements. Optimum electrical distribution for lighting system, air conditions and other electrical loads has been carried out. Power and quantity of each type of the lighting system lamps and the energy consumption of the lighting system are investigated. The design of the air conditions system is based on summer and winter outdoor conditions. Ventilated, air conditioned spaces and fresh air rates are determined. Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) is the air conditioning system used in this building. The VRF outdoor units are located on the roof of the building and connected to indoor units through refrigerant piping. Indoor units are distributed in all building zones through ducts and air outlets to ensure efficient air distribution. The green building energy consumption is evaluated monthly all over one year and compared with the consumed energy in the non-green conditions using the Hourly Analysis Program (HAP) model. The comparison results show that the total energy consumed per year in the green building is about 1,103,221 kWh while the non-green energy consumption is about 1,692,057 kWh. In other words, the green building total annual energy cost is reduced from 136,581 $ to 89,051 $. This means that, the energy saving and consequently the money-saving of this green construction is about 35%. In addition, 13 points are awarded by applying one of the most popular worldwide green energy certification programs (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design “LEED”) as a rating system for the green construction. It is concluded that this green building ensures sustainability, saves energy and offers an optimum energy performance with minimum cost.
Residential buildings fund of Kazakhstan was built in the Soviet time about 35-60 years ago without considering energy efficiency measures. Currently, most of these buildings are in a rundown condition and fail to meet the minimum of hygienic, sanitary and comfortable living requirements. The paper aims to examine the reports of recent building energy survey activities in the country and provide a possible solution for retrofitting existing housing stock built before 1989 which could be applicable for building envelope in cold climate. Methodology also includes two-dimensional modeling of possible practical solutions and further recommendations.
The use of eccentrically braced frame (EBF) is increasing day by day as EBF possesses high elastic stiffness, stable inelastic response under cyclic lateral loading, and excellent ductility and energy dissipation capacity. The ductility and energy dissipation capacity of EBF depends on the active link beams. Recently, there are two types EBFs; these are conventional EBFs and EBFs with replaceable links. The conventional EBF has a disadvantage during maintenance in post-earthquake. The concept of removable active link beam in EBF is developed to overcome the limitation of the conventional EBF in post-earthquake. In this study, a replaceable link with reduced web section is introduced and design equations are suggested. In addition, nonlinear finite element analysis was conducted in order to evaluate the proposed links.
The impact that urban green spaces have on sustainability and quality of life is phenomenal. This is also true for the local South African environment. However, in reality green spaces in urban environments are decreasing due to growing populations, increasing urbanization and development pressure. This further impacts on the provision of child-friendly spaces, a concept that is already limited in local context. Child-friendly spaces are described as environments in which people (children) feel intimately connected to, influencing the physical, social, emotional, and ecological health of individuals and communities. The benefits of providing such spaces for the youth are well documented in literature. This research therefore aimed to investigate the concept of child-friendly spaces and its applicability to the South African planning context, in order to guide the planning of such spaces for future communities and use. Child-friendly spaces in the urban environment of the city of Durban, was used as local case study, along with two international case studies namely Mullerpier public playground in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, and Kadidjiny Park in Melville, Australia. The aim was to determine how these spaces were planned and developed and to identify tools that were used to accomplish the goal of providing successful child-friendly green spaces within urban areas. The need and significance of planning for such spaces was portrayed within the international case studies. It is confirmed that minimal provision is made for green space planning within the South African context, when there is reflected on the international examples. As a result international examples and disciples of providing child-friendly green spaces should direct planning guidelines within local context. The research concluded that child-friendly green spaces have a positive impact on the urban environment and assist in a child’s development and interaction with the natural environment. Regrettably, the planning of these child-friendly spaces is not given priority within current spatial plans, despite the proven benefits of such.
Traditional architecture is a valuable source of inspiration, which needs to be studied and integrated in the contemporary designs for achieving an identifiable contemporary architecture. Traditional architecture of Iran is among the distinguished examples of being contextually responsive, not only by considering the environmental conditions of a region, but also in terms of respecting the socio-cultural values of its context. In order to apply these valuable features to the current designs, they need to be adapted to today's condition, needs and desires. In this paper, the main features of the traditional architecture of Iran are explained to interrogate them in the formation of a contemporary house in Tehran, Iran. Also a table is provided to compare the utilization of the traditional design concepts in the traditional houses and the contemporary example of it. It is believed that such study would increase the awareness of contemporary designers by providing them some clues on maintaining the traditional values in the current design layouts particularly in the residential sector that would ultimately improve the quality of space in the contemporary architecture.
Housing Associations (HAs) contribute circa 20% of the UK’s housing supply. HAs are however under increasing pressure as a result of funding cuts and rent reductions. Due to the increased pressure, a number of processes are currently being reviewed by HAs, especially how they manage and learn from defects. Learning from defects is considered a useful approach to achieving defect reduction within the UK housebuilding industry. This paper contributes to our understanding of how HAs learn from defects by undertaking an initial round table discussion with key HA stakeholders as part of an ongoing collaborative research project with the National House Building Council (NHBC) to better understand how house builders and HAs learn from defects to reduce their prevalence. The initial discussion shows that defect information runs through a number of groups, both internal and external of a HA during both the defects management process and organizational learning (OL) process. Furthermore, HAs are reliant on capturing and recording defect data as the foundation for the OL process. During the OL process defect data analysis is the primary enabler to recognizing a need for a change to organizational routines. When a need for change has been recognized, new options are typically pursued to design out defects via updates to a HAs Employer’s Requirements. Proposed solutions are selected by a review board and committed to organizational routine. After implementing a change, both structured and unstructured feedback is sought to establish the change’s success. The findings from the HA discussion demonstrates that OL can achieve defect reduction within the house building sector in the UK. The paper concludes by outlining a potential ‘learning from defects model’ for the housebuilding industry as well as describing future work.
“Architecture” is one component of sustainable cultural tourism. The sustainability of architecture is possible through preservation and restoration activities. In Turkey, which has an important place in the world’s cultural heritage, several studies focused on the sustainability of the cultural heritage were done in terms of the principles of “preserve-use-sustain”. Within the scope of this study, a methodology will be proposed in order to obtain the development of different scenarios supporting sustainable tourism. Sille is an ancient village located on the Spice Road and Silk Road dating back to the Ottoman and Seljuk eras. However, in recent years it is protected as an archeological site. In the “Alternative Project Phase”, the streets and buildings which bring dynamism to trade are determined; among these, 10 major buildings in Hacı Ali Ağa Street are studied.
The phenomenon of visual disorder is prominent in contemporary townscapes. This paper provides a theoretical framework for the assessment of visual consistency in townscape in order to achieve more favourable outcomes for users. In this paper, visual consistency refers to the amount of similarity between adjacent components of townscape. The paper investigates parameters which relate to visual consistency in townscape, explores the relationships between them and highlights their significance. The paper uses arithmetic methods from outside the domain of urban design to enable the establishment of an objective approach of assessment which considers subjective indicators including users’ preferences. These methods involve the standard of deviation, colour distance and the distance between points. The paper identifies urban space as a key representative of the visual parameters of townscape. It focuses on its two components, geometry and colour in the evaluation of the visual consistency of townscape. Accordingly, this article proposes four measurements. The first quantifies the number of vertices, which are points in the three-dimensional space that are connected, by lines, to represent the appearance of elements. The second evaluates the visual surroundings of urban space through assessing the location of their vertices. The last two measurements calculate the visual similarity in both vertices and colour in townscape by the calculation of their variation using methods including standard of deviation and colour difference. The proposed quantitative assessment is based on users’ preferences towards these measurements. The paper offers a theoretical basis for a practical tool which can alter the current understanding of architectural form and its application in urban space. This tool is currently under development. The proposed method underpins expert subjective assessment and permits the establishment of a unified framework which adds to creativity by the achievement of a higher level of consistency and satisfaction among the citizens of evolving townscapes.
Current building sector is focused on reduction of energy requirements, on renewable energy generation and on regeneration of existing urban areas. These targets need to be solved with a systemic approach, considering several aspects simultaneously such as climate conditions, lighting conditions, solar radiation, PV potential, etc. The solar access analysis is an already known method to analyze the solar potentials, but in current years, simulation tools have provided more effective opportunities to perform this type of analysis, in particular in the early design stage. Nowadays, the study of the solar access is related to the easiness of the use of simulation tools, in rapid and easy way, during the design process. This study presents a comparison of three simulation tools, from the point of view of the user, with the aim to highlight differences in the easy-to-use of these tools. Using a real urban context as case study, three tools; Ecotect, Townscope and Heliodon, are tested, performing models and simulations and examining the capabilities and output results of solar access analysis. The evaluation of the ease-to-use of these tools is based on some detected parameters and features, such as the types of simulation, requirements of input data, types of results, etc. As a result, a framework is provided in which features and capabilities of each tool are shown. This framework shows the differences among these tools about functions, features and capabilities. The aim of this study is to support users and to improve the integration of simulation tools for solar access with the design process.
The concept of community building started in 1994 in Taiwan. After years of development, it fostered the notion of active local resident participation in community issues as co-operators, instead of minions. Participatory design gives participants more control in the decision-making process, helps to reduce the friction caused by arguments and assists in bringing different parties to consensus. This results in an increase in the efficiency of projects run in the community. Therefore, the participation of local residents is key to the success of community building. This study applied participatory design to develop plans for the reuse of deserted spaces in the community from the first stage of brainstorming for design ideas, making creative models to be employed later, through to the final stage of construction. After conducting a series of participatory designed activities, it aimed to integrate the different opinions of residents, develop a sense of belonging and reach a consensus. Besides this, it also aimed at building the residents’ awareness of their responsibilities for the environment and related issues of sustainable development. By reviewing relevant literature and understanding the history of related studies, the study formulated a theory. It took the “2012-2014 Changhua County Community Planner Counseling Program” as a case study to investigate the implementation process of participatory design. Research data are collected by document analysis, participants’ observation and in-depth interviews. After examining the three elements of “Design Participation”, “Construction Participation”, and” Follow–up Maintenance Participation” in the case, the study emerged with a promising conclusion: Maintenance works were carried out better compared to common public works. Besides this, maintenance costs were lower. Moreover, the works that residents were involved in were more creative. Most importantly, the community characteristics could be easy be recognized.
High-rises and placemaking is an understudied combination which receives more and more interest with the proliferation of this typology in many British cities. The reason for studying three major cities in England: London, Birmingham and Manchester, is to learn from the latest advances in urban design in well-developed and prominent urban environment. The analysis of several high-rise sites reveals the weaknesses in urban design of contemporary British cities and presents an opportunity to study from the implemented examples. Therefore, the purpose of this research is to analyze design approaches towards creating a sustainable and varied urban environment when high-rises are involved. The research questions raised by the study are: what is the quality of high-rises and their surroundings; what facilities and features are deployed in the research area; what is the role of the high-rise buildings in the placemaking process; what urban design principles are applicable in this context. The methodology utilizes observation of the researched area by structured questions, developed by the author to evaluate the outdoor qualities of the high-rise surroundings. In this context, the paper argues that the quality of the public realm around the high-rises is quite low, missing basic but vital elements such as plazas, public art, and seating, along with landscaping and pocket parks. There is lack of coherence, the rhythm of the streets is often disrupted, and even though the high-rises are very aesthetically appealing, they fail to create a sense of place on their own. The implications of the study are that future planning can take into consideration the critique in this article and provide more opportunities for urban design interventions around high-rise buildings in the British cities.
In the situation of great acceleration of changes and the need for new developments in the cities on one hand and conservation and regeneration approaches on the other hand, place identity and its relation with heritage context have taken on new importance. This relation is generally mutual and complex one. The significant point in this relation is that the process of identifying something as heritage rather than just historical phenomena, brings that which may be inherited into the realm of identity. In planning and urban design as well as environmental psychology and phenomenology domain, place identity and its attributes and components were studied and discussed. However, the relation between physical environment (especially heritage) and identity has been neglected in the planning literature. This article aims to review the knowledge on this field and develop a model on the influence and relation of these two major concepts (heritage and identity). To build this conceptual model, we draw on available literature in environmental psychology as well as planning on place identity and heritage environment using a descriptive-analytical methodology to understand how they can inform the planning strategies and governance policies. A cross-disciplinary analysis is essential to understand the nature of place identity and heritage context and develop a more holistic model of their relationship in order to be employed in planning process and decision making. Moreover, this broader and more holistic perspective would enable both social scientists and planners to learn from one another’s expertise for a fuller understanding of community dynamics. The result indicates that a combination of these perspectives can provide a richer understanding—not only of how planning impacts our experience of place, but also how place identity can impact community planning and development.
The purpose of this research is to upgrade a pleasing, sustainable and safe shelter in the Afghan urban community. It also aims to maintain traditional housing, which is fitted to its environment, while attempting to upgrade it with new, traditional standards. The three main objectives of this study are to upgrade the traditional courtyard house to become safe and sustainable today and tomorrow; to fit the contemporary house environmentally and culturally, and to suppress or reduce the broad gap between traditional and contemporary housing. The paper tries to exhibit and analyze the sustainably best practices available in both traditional and contemporary courtyard housing in Afghanistan. For instance, the use of thick walls and Tawa-Khana (floor heating system) shows the best sustainable practice in that context.
Problems exist in the present construction industry in China. Conflicts hinder the development of the whole society, such as contradictions between resource reservation and a huge population, living space needs and low building production efficiency, as well as environment protection and high pollution production pattern. In order to solve the problems and find a solution, research is needed to explore a building system. By investigating the whole architectural process and contrasting analysis of light structures and heavy structures, the paper raised the concepts to cope with the existing challenges, such as design conception based on product and real construction processes, design methods focusing on components, and maximum utilization of the temporary building by optimizing the construction speed and building performance. The project was not only designed in virtual reality, but was also physically constructed in the real world. A series of aluminum light structure housing systems were dictated at last, with the characteristics of high performance, extremely rapid construction speed and also flexible function. It can be used in lots of aspects ranging from a single building in a remote area to a large residential community.
Climate change and sea level rise is one of the greatest challenges facing human beings in the 21st century. Because of sea level rise, several low-lying coastal areas around the globe are at risk of being completely submerged, disappearing under water. Particularly in Viet Nam, the rise in sea level is predicted to result in more frequent and even permanently inundated coastal plains. As a result, land reserving fund of coastal cities is going to be narrowed in near future, while construction ground is becoming increasingly limited due to a rapid growth in population. Faced with this reality, the solutions are being discussed not only in tradition view such as accommodation is raised or moved to higher areas, or “living with the water”, but also forwards to “living on the water”. Therefore, the concept of a sustainable floating community with floating houses based on the precious value of long term historical tradition of water dwellings in Viet Nam would be a sustainable solution for adaptation of climate change and sea level rise in the coastal areas. The sustainable floating community is comprised of sustainability in four components: architecture, environment, socio-economic and living quality. This research paper is focused on sustainability in architectural component of floating community. Through detailed architectural analysis of current floating houses and floating communities in Viet Nam, this research not only accumulates precious values of traditional architecture that need to be preserved and developed in the proposed concept, but also illustrates its weaknesses that need to address for optimal design of the future sustainable floating communities. Based on these studies the research would provide guidelines with appropriate architectural solutions for the concept of sustainable floating community with floating housing units that are adapted to climate change and sea level rise in Viet Nam.