Pre-design Simulation Strategies

By David Beach and Keith Hedges.

Published by The Design Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

“A green agenda did not used to be about ‘fashion,’ it used to be about survival.” This quote from Norman Foster, begins to articulate the argument that despite our efforts toward sustainability, we are still acting on a trend, not necessity. If environmental factors are going to inform our work, they should be researched at the outset of design by implementing current technology. The early phases of the design process, especially building programming, still rely heavily on intuition, and a singular vision rather than pragmatic information which can shape both the quantitative and qualitative aspects of design. Designers must begin integrating a process of intense information modeling and simulation for economic, social, and environmental sustainability to create work that moves past a fashionable trend, and become a necessary component of architectural work. This paper describes a design strategy that deploys the climate and sun, environmental, daylighting, and wind simulations. Ten computer programs were evaluated for accessibility, reliable output, and convenience. We found that the simulations may be achieved with six interoperable programs universally available through free academic use or free trial downloads. The software testing indicates that the simulations may occur prior to any formative design decisions, as an elemental part of the building programming phase.

Keywords: Sustainability, Simulation, BIM, Environment, Integrated Design

Design Principles and Practices: An International Journal, Volume 5, Issue 5, pp.609-620. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 2.230MB).

David Beach

Assistant Professor of Architecture, Hammons School of Architecture, Drury University, Springfield, Missouri, USA

Keith Hedges

Assistant Professor, Architecture Department, Hammons School of Architecture, Drury University, Springfield, Missouri, USA


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