House Plans and Home Floor Plans
After the new floor plan is in place, rerun the spaghetti chart study. Estimate the number of steps now required, and calculate how much time will be saved on a typical shift. A few steps saved here and there can add up over time, especially if some of those involve toting heavy boxes of paper to the printers. Put that value on your 5S communications board. Then go back and see if the new floor plan can be made even better
The organization of interior spaces should support the passive design strategies and overall resource conservation. Floor plans should allow for the free flow of air through the unit by creating a line-of-sight connection between the windows expected to provide air input and exhaust. Open, flexible floor plans allow for the dwelling unit to accommodate many different types of tenants and be adaptable over time. The main principles of universal design should be incorporated, in that the design should (1) be useful to people with diverse abilities, (2) accommodate a wide range of preferences and abilities, (3) minimize hazards, and (4) provide appropriate size and space to reach and manipulate items in the home regardless of body size, posture, or mobility. Stacking plumbing, vents, and major structural elements reduces the use of building materials.
Passive ventilation reduces the need for air-conditioning and fans, and improves indoor air quality by supplementing mechanical ventilation during temperate periods. Strategies include designing window location and floor plans for cross-ventilation using awnings, louvers, horizontal fins, or trees to block direct sun on windows and minimizing window exposure to low-angle afternoon summer sun. Recommended passive heating and cooling strategies include the following
Passive cooling systems, like passive space heating systems, have many attractive features, not least simplicity, cost and reliability. They also have serious limitations. Windcatchers, solar chimneys and the stack effect on their own can never ensure that stale warm air is always extracted from every nook and cranny of every building and that cool fresh air always replaces it at a rate which significantly improves occupant comfort. Larger buildings with complex floor plans that depend entirely on unforced natural circulation have a mixed record in practice. Odours can be a problem. Occupant expectations can be higher than the building design can satisfy. Where there is a high density of occupation and a multiplicity of heat-generating office equipment the case for active cooling could be unanswerable.
The solution was to provide each quadrant of the floor plan with large lightwells doubling up as air delivery shafts. The buoyancy of rising warm air draws fresh air into plenums below floor level to the base of each light tower. From here the air is drawn upwards through preheating coils to be released to rooms at floor level. By now the air has reached 18 C. Additional warmth is provided by perimeter radiators. The air is then drawn into the exit stacks spaced around the external walls. 'Termination' devices at the top of the stacks ensure that prevailing winds will not push air back down the stacks (Figures 12.3 and 12.4).
The biggest factor in terms of a masonry heater's effectiveness is its location. It should be in the center of your home, preferably in a large room. If it's not, you're sacrificing potential efficiency. Masonry heaters work best in homes with open floor plans, where the heat can spread throughout the entire living space, slowly and evenly. In fact, most masonry heaters are installed in new home construction, where the home design is centered on the masonry heater.
Sketch out the existing floor plan and add it to the communications board. Note the location of all work benches, desks, equipment, and shelves. Make a note of where the electrical and network outlets are located. 5S teams are empowered to move equipment, shelves, and desks. Just about anything is fair game, except walls and doors. If additional BEFORE 5S FLOOR PLAN BEFORE 5S FLOOR PLAN wiring is needed to support the new locations, then the executive sponsor arranges for prompt skilled trades support. Refer to Figure 13-2 for an example of a before floor plan for a printer room. 1. Make a sketch of the current floor plan that identifies all work areas, storage areas, etc. Now is the time to analyze the workspace to see how it might be changed for more efficient operations. One tool for doing this is the Spaghetti diagram. It tracks the flow of people and work through a work area. Refer to Figure 13-2 for an example floor plan for a printer room. In this example, there are two large...
A visual work place also requires marking everything in the office. Every cubicle and office has the occupant's name on it. Every shelf, closet, and closed cabinet is marked with its purpose. Signs are also posted showing the floor plan so anyone entering the area can see which office belongs to the person for whom they are looking.
Work-at-home arrangements are now frequently planned into many of these new development districts. In the ecological housing district of Morra Park, in Drachten, for example, about one-third of the houses are specifically designed to accommodate in-house businesses. In these homes, 30 percent of the floor area is required to be devoted to the owner's primary economic livelihood. Already, these homes house offices for an architect, a photographer, and an accountant. Similar house designs can be seen in the new growth area of Nieuwland (Amersfoort). Here, a certain number of homes are designed with floor plans and separate entrances to accommodate an in-home office or business. These are common design elements in new Dutch housing estates, and many other examples can be cited.
In warm or hot countries the building must become a good heat dissipater. Just as people who are hot sprawl out to lose heat, so buildings sprawl in warm and hot climates. In many hot climates buildings have a high surface area volume ratio but the walls facing the sun are protected from direct radiation by verandas, balconies or wide eaves. The shallower floor plan of heat-dissipating buildings also promotes easy cross-ventilation of rooms for cooling, which in compact plan forms is more difficult. House forms in such climates are either long and thin or have a courtyard, or light well, in the centre of the house, to maximize the building's wall area. The relationship between ventilation and cooling is dealt with in Chapter 5.
The fifth principle is to design buildings for flexibility so that a mix of uses can be accommodated under the same roof and so that floor plans are 'robust', in the sense that they can be adapted for different uses during the lifetime of the building. Finally, buildings should be located on public transport routes and with close connections to other parts of the urban structure, which is a major theme of the next chapter.
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