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APARTMENT DESIGN:KEY PARAMETERS  Apartment Types

 Ground Floor Apartments  Apartment Layout  Services Design  Internal Circulation  Building Appearance  Balconies  Roof Design Acoustic Privacy  Daylight Access  Natural Ventilation Materials

Apartment Types Based upon number of Bedrooms.  Based upon the Levels: single storey, two storey, two storey with mezzanine, three storey, ground floor, penthouse etc.  Based upon number of Walls and Orientation.

Influencing factors for an apartment will include: Depth and Orientation of the building; Internal Circulation both vertical and horizontal; Location of apartment entrances; and the positioning of services.

Ground Floor Apartments Ground floor apartments provide opportunities for the building to engage with the streetscape through individual entrances, landscaping and facade design. Direct access from the street and on-grade private landscaped areas increase housing choice and improve levels of amenity for the elderly and families.

Individual entrances help to animate the street. Hard Ground floor apartments can be designed to create a and soft landscaping around entrances helps to ensure human scale at street level. privacy for residents is maintained.

Ground floor apartments contribute to street activity by maximising the number of individual entrances. Front gardens and stairs articulate the street, while a change in level helps to maintain privacy for residents.

Design Guidelines for Ground Floor Apartments Design of front gardens, porches and verandas should be designed to contribute to the spatial and visual articulation of the street while maintaining adequate levels of privacy for residents. Individual entrances animate the street edge and increase levels of activity on the street. Raise the ground floor level by up to 1.2 metres above street level to minimise sightlines from the street to the private garden or terrace. Incorporate private gardens which accommodate a range of activities and can be directly accessed from primary living spaces of the apartment. Maximise opportunities for solar access in ground floor units, particularly in denser areas, by: Increasing floor to ceiling heights and providing taller windows. Selecting appropriate species of trees and shrubs which allow solar access in winter and provide shade in summer.

Apartment Layout Apartment layout design and configuration is a fundamental element in making residential apartments livable. The internal layout of an apartment determines: Social and spatial relationships between rooms. Social and spatial relationships between the apartments inhabitants. Quality of residential amenity, Access to natural light and ventilation, Level of acoustic and visual privacy.

Two bedroom unit. 74 sq. metres. Minimum size: 70 sq. m

Three bedroom unit. Dual aspect 92 sq. metres. Minimum size 90 sq. m.

Design Guidelines: Apartment Layout Ability to accommodate alternative furniture layouts. Providing for a range of activities and privacy levels between rooms. Efficient circulation planning to ensure room sizes are maximised. Avoid locating the kitchen as part of the primary circulation space i.e. at the point of entry. Ensure adequate storage space within every apartment. Orienting main living spaces to the outlook and primary aspect and away from neighboring sources of noise or view. Providing private open space for every apartment in the form of balconies, terraces, courtyards or gardens Locating all habitable rooms, and where possible kitchens and bathrooms, on the outside walls of the building to ensure each can be serviced by a window providing natural light and ventilation.

Design interior spaces around a courtyard to maximise the relationship between living spaces and outside.

Services Design The design of building services should be considered at the earliest planning stages to ensure their location and operation does not compromise residential amenity or the appearance of the building.

Wet areas like Toilets and kitchens are adjacent to maximise plumbing efficiency. Vertical stacking allows effective co-ordination of water supply, wastewater pipes and vents.

Design Guidelines: Services Design Co-ordinate the location of piped services such as water and gas supply and wastewater removal: within the apartment; across the building floor plan; and vertically through the building. Design services to minimise any acoustic transmission. Design services to ensure they do not compromise visual amenity or presentation of the building. Plan apartments within the building so that service areas are adjacent to one another. This promotes a co-ordinated service design and limits the effect of noise from services on adjacent apartments. Insulate pipes for acoustic privacy. Locate wastewater stacks adjacent to non-habitable rooms to further reduce the impact of any pipe noises.

Downpipes from both the roof and balconies can be incorporated into facade design so they are less noticeable.

Internal Circulation Internal circulation in an apartment building refers to the spaces that provide access to apartments. These include lobbies, corridors, lifts and stairs. The location, proportion, extent and frequency of these elements will have a direct impact on the form, layout and articulation of the building.

Double height mezzanine spaces and use of innovative systems can aide in natural light and ventilation within circulation spaces.

Design Guidelines: Internal Circulation Promote accessibility, amenity and safety for all users of circulation spaces. Provide generous corridor widths and ceiling heights, particularly in pausing places such as lobbies outside lifts and apartment entry doors. Avoid long corridors and ensure short clear sight lines. Where unavoidable, articulate longer corridors with regularly spaced foyers and the use of natural day lighting. Avoid tight corners. In buildings where no lift is provided, use accessible stair design with lower rise to tread ratios to facilitate access by the elderly or mobility impaired. Ensure appropriate levels of lighting, using natural day lighting where possible. Ensure adequate ventilation, using natural ventilation where possible.

Building Appearance The building facade is the external face of the building and has an important role to play as part of the interface between private and public domains. The architectural design of the facade should contribute to the quality of public spaces whilst reflecting the use, internal design and structure of the building.

Expression of the balcony as a separate element gives the facade of the building definition and variation.

The repetition of elements, in this case balconies and external metal blinds, can be designed to create rhythms and patterns which enhance the building facade.

Fenestration design provides overlooking to the street and also creates an interesting facade composition.

Variation in how balconies are expressed through use of materials and balustrade types can add visual depth to a facade.

Design Guidelines: Building Appearance Varying fenestration size and design to relate to the functional use of the room beyond provides a more interesting and legible building e.g. different sized windows for bathrooms and living rooms. Recessed elements such as balconies and deep set windows can create shadow lines that afford visual depth to the facade. The use of environmental controls such as brisesoleil, screens and light shelves which further articulate the facade. The co-ordination and integration of building services, such as drainage pipes and ventilation ducts, into the overall facade and balcony design. The co-ordination and integration of security grilles and screens and garage entry doors, into the overall facade and balcony design. Organise the overall proportions of the building into a well balanced composition before organising into smaller units.

Balconies Balconies provide outdoor space and increase amenity and lifestyle options for apartment residents. They extend the living area of an apartment, provide private open space and offer opportunities for outlook and to enjoy being outside. Balconies also operate as important architectural components and can provide a means of organising and articulating the facade design.

Apartments that occupy more than one level can maximise balcony space by providing access from upper rooms also.

Balconies should be large enough to accommodate outdoor furniture. Use of louvres as shading allows adjustment of sunlight.

Environmental controls such as blinds and screens can be used to regulate sun and wind exposure. Screens and opaque balustrade also aid visual privacy.

Design Guidelines: Balconies Be of sufficient size and shape to accommodate outdoor furniture i.e. table and chairs and thereby encourage indoor/outdoor living. Minimum 2.5m depth. Consider balcony design in terms of the local context and climate. Choose balcony typology cantilevered, recessed or semi-recessed in response to daylight, wind acoustic and visual privacy. Ensure balcony design prevents direct sightlines into the apartment from the street and neighboring residences. Consider the proportions of the screening provided. It should be designed to conceal a person seated looking at the view, clothes drying, or storage of materials etc.

Roof Design Roof design plays an important role in the architectural composition and expression of a building. Good roof design takes into account its visibility from different vantage points within the local context.

The angles cut into this roof have been designed to provide shading from intense summer sun while allowing sun penetration into the apartments in cooler winter months.

Large overhangs provide sun protection on the northern face of this building. The integration with other shading elements and balcony design provide interest on the facade.

Design Guidelines: Roof Design Minimising the appearance of large buildings by breaking down the massing to minimise apparent bulk or to relate to existing finer grained context.

Consider the roof design in terms of the orientation and micro-climate of the site. For example, extended eaves may provide sun shading to north-facing walls while roof design may provide additional weathering protection around openings in exposed or coastal locations.

Consider incorporating service elements into the roof design to minimise their visual impact. These may include: lift over-runs, service plants, chimneys, telecommunications aerials, vent stacks, signage, downpipes and gutters.

Acoustic Privacy Acoustic privacy is the minimisation of sound transmission both between apartments and between external and internal spaces. Designing for acoustic privacy relies on a combination of the layout of rooms and the location, separation and configuration of buildings.

Minimisation of sound transmission should be considered when arranging layouts of apartments. Ensure that power points are not back to back as they transmit sound between units.

Design Guidelines: Acoustic Privacy Group noisier rooms next to one another whilst grouping quieter rooms further away. Utilise storage and circulation spaces to create buffers to noise from other apartments, building services or common areas. Use design technologies and techniques to reconcile conflicts between noise, outlook and views such as Double Glazing, enclosed balconies with operable screens etc.

Daylight Access Natural daylight is an important aspect of apartment design because it reduces the need for artificial light, thereby increasing energy efficiency and residential amenity. Daylight comprises both skylight (diffuse light from the sky), and sunlight (direct beam radiation from the sun).

The use of clerestory windows and appropriate internal shading mechanisms allows control of the amount of daylight entering the apartment.

Design Guidelines: Daylight Access Ensure communal open space receives direct daylight during winter months and provides adequate shading during the summer season. Promote double height spaces in ground floor apartments or areas where daylight access is limited, to assist daylight penetration into living areas and private open spaces. Manage glare and provide shading during summer months through the use of: Environmental controls such as eaves, canopies, balconies, louvred screens and planting. The use of light wells as a primary source of daylight should be restricted to non-habitable rooms only.

Natural Ventilation Natural ventilation is an important aspect of apartment design because it ensures a regular exchange of fresh air which is essential for maintaining a comfortable living environment. The orientation, configuration and articulation of the building envelope of both the building and each apartment must be considered if adequate natural ventilation is to be achieved. Good design which achieves appropriate natural ventilation in apartment units and buildings will eliminate the need for mechanical ventilation and air conditioning.

Use of louvers on balconies to give occupants control of air flow and daylight.

Design Guidelines: Natural Ventilation Consider siting and layout of the building to direct and exploit natural breezes. Site analysis should have established the direction of prevailing breezes. Building depths that can achieve effective natural ventilation are generally limited to between 10 and 18 metres. Positioning small windows on windward walls and larger windows on leeward walls, creates a pressure differential which will draw air through the building. Locate rooms with similar uses together so that an apartment can be compartmentalised for greater efficiency in winter heating or summer cooling e.g. plan living rooms together and bedrooms together. The design of doors and windows can optimise opportunities for natural ventilation.

Materials The choice of materials used both internally and externally in an apartment project will affect the appearance of the development and how well it performs and endures over time.

The junctions between materials need to be carefully detailed to ensure the integrity and durability of both materials.

The choice of materials when designing infill buildings should reflect the existing character of adjacent buildings. Primary elements such as concrete can be combined with glass and other materials.

Design Guidelines : Materials Choose enduring materials that are easy to maintain and retain their appearance over time. Choose materials that are fit for purpose e.g. exterior tiles that are exposed to the elements should be non-slip. Consider the use of local materials that reflect the local environment and character. Consider the use of different materials to break down the scale of large buildings. When using a combination of materials, consider how one will affect another and detail appropriately to avoid unsightly reactions.

Thank You.