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Article
Publication date: 21 September 2018

Muizz O. Sanni-Anibire, Mohammad A. Hassanain, Abubakar Sadiq Mahmoud and Wahhaj Ahmed

University research and academic laboratory facilities are key elements in the support of a successful education and research experience. World-class universities consider…

Abstract

Purpose

University research and academic laboratory facilities are key elements in the support of a successful education and research experience. World-class universities consider the functionality of these facilities as a matter of high priority. The functionality of research and academic laboratory facilities is strongly linked to the productivity of students, teachers and researchers who use these facilities. Thus, the purpose of this paper is to evaluate the functional performance of eight university laboratories using the space syntax approach.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology involved the measurements and drawing of as-built floor plans of selected academic and research laboratories. The main benchmarks involved in measuring the functional efficiency, such as mean depth (MD) of space and real relative asymmetry (RRA), were analyzed using the A-graph software and Microsoft Excel spreadsheets.

Findings

The results show that “Type D” (chemistry teaching laboratory) and “Type C” (concrete teaching/research laboratory) laboratories have the tendency to be more accessible, efficient and flexible compared to the other laboratory layouts with MD and RRA values of 5.947 and 3.472, and 4.287 and 1.674, respectively.

Practical implications

This study shows that the functional efficiency of academic and research laboratories can be influenced by the spatial configuration of the space, as presented by the space syntax theory. Space syntax benchmark elements, such as MD, RRA, R and H*, can be used to compare various spatial arrangements, and the results can inform decisions on ways to re-arrange the space for optimum efficiency.

Originality/value

It is hoped that the idea of space syntax theory in the evaluation of the functional efficiency of laboratory facilities, illustrated in this research, is of significant contribution to the enhancement of the research and educational experience of concerned stakeholders in teaching and research environments.

Details

International Journal of Building Pathology and Adaptation, vol. 36 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-4708

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 2016

Karen Munro and David Grierson

The world’s urban population is rapidly growing, now exceeding its rural population, and is expected to reach 70% of the world’s total by 2050. Research in environmental…

Abstract

The world’s urban population is rapidly growing, now exceeding its rural population, and is expected to reach 70% of the world’s total by 2050. Research in environmental psychology increasingly supports the Biophilia Hypothesis which holds that our connection with Nature is innate. Thus, how do we maintain a human connection to Nature in an increasingly urbanising world? This paper is based on current research work and explores the boundary between built and natural environments, specifically how visual connectivity to Nature affects how people use social spaces, compared to spatial connectivity. Case study work is being undertaken at Arcosanti urban laboratory in the Arizona desert. Arcosanti construction began in 1970 to test Paolo Soleri’s Arcology Theory which proposes, in opposition to sprawling cities, a new form of urban setting which is compact with tightly restricted horizontal growth, leaving the surrounding natural environment as undeveloped “wilderness”. Through development of a Space/Nature Syntax methodology applied within a uniquely compact urban form, this research attempts to understand how designing to maintain the instinctive bond with Nature can affect social interaction and inform future design choices within built environments. This paper describes the development of, and basis for, the Space/Nature Syntax methodology, presents initial findings achieved through its recent application at Arcosanti, and outlines future work. Initial analysis indicates that visual connectivity to Nature is a significant influence on certain types of social interactions when compared to spatial connectivity, although more research is needed to verify the level of significance.

Details

Open House International, vol. 41 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0168-2601

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Article
Publication date: 14 August 2020

Shiran Geng, Hing-Wah Chau, Se Yan, Wenyu Zhang and Chunyang Zhang

Spatial arrangement of hospital environments has been proven to have impacts on hospital users such as wayfinding, privacy and operational efficiency. Many studies…

Abstract

Purpose

Spatial arrangement of hospital environments has been proven to have impacts on hospital users such as wayfinding, privacy and operational efficiency. Many studies examined the spatial quality of hospitals, but there is a lack of comparative research between Chinese and Australian hospitals. Hospitals in both countries have salient features that are worth to learn and can inform hospital stakeholders internationally on design decisions. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate and compare the spatial quality of hospitals from both countries using space syntax approach and field observation.

Design/methodology/approach

This study uses space syntax analysis and observation to provide qualitative and quantitative data. Illustrative case studies from both countries are selected for comparison. The main benchmarks involved in measuring the spatial qualities, such as step depth and visual connectivity, are analysed using Depthmap X before comparing with the results from observation.

Findings

For Chinese hospitals to be more human-centred, public space design and facility management need additional attention. Australian hospitals could learn from Hospital D on how to design highly centralised nursing stations that cope with a high patient flow. Global policy and decision-makers should consider the potential inconsistency between initial design intention and practical use.

Originality/value

Practical implications were made based on the results for bettering hospital environments. It is hoped that the methodology presented in this research is of significance to the enhancement of global healthcare environment research.

Details

International Journal of Building Pathology and Adaptation, vol. 39 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-4708

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Article
Publication date: 21 October 2019

Yasmine Sabry Hegazi and Mohanad Fouda

The purpose of this paper is to develop strategies of re-imaging the Rosetta historic district through choosing the suitable uses and their specific locations in…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop strategies of re-imaging the Rosetta historic district through choosing the suitable uses and their specific locations in compliance with the urban design fabric of the historic core. These strategies are to be fulfilled using Space Syntax as an urban analysis tool, in the context of “connectivity analysis.”

Design/methodology/approach

The research methodology follows the combined strategy between three methods of research: a SWOT analysis, to reveal the historic core status; an experimental research approach, which stimulates the chosen area via Space Syntax; and the third is a case study of the Rosetta historic core.

Findings

The re-usage of the Rosetta old core was not originally planned as commercial and to host movable vendors, but the core was forced to adapt afterwards to suit this usage, while the Souk and those big new residential building urban blocks have clearly deformed the historic image of the Rosetta historic core. Moving from one space to another, it was found that well-connected spaces have higher movement density, such as Al Souk Street, while less dense spaces can tolerate more movement without conflicting with highly dense ones. The existing commercial activities can be classified into movable activities – which can be easily relocated – and shop-based, which need a developmental approach in their original locations. The disconnected district can be used as a commercial zone for the movable vendors, to which human flow can be successfully directed in order to reduce the density in the more connected spaces.

Originality/value

The research value lies in exploring how to re-image urban heritage via relocating the places reused with unsuitable activities through Space Syntax.

Details

Archnet-IJAR: International Journal of Architectural Research, vol. 13 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2631-6862

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Article
Publication date: 22 December 2020

Nur Adibah Binti Abdul Nasir, Ahmad Sanusi Hassan, Fatemeh Khozaei and Muhammad Hafeez Bin Abdul Nasir

Since the appearance of COVID-19 social distancing and staying home have been recommended repeatedly by the governments for disease prevention. As the challenge continues…

Abstract

Purpose

Since the appearance of COVID-19 social distancing and staying home have been recommended repeatedly by the governments for disease prevention. As the challenge continues to remain the current study seeks to examine the factors affecting social distancing through space planning and management. More specifically the current study aims to examine the appropriateness of the spatial organization and space configuration of a clubhouse with a linear plan layout in the mitigation of the spread of infections due to serious pandemic COVID-19.

Design/methodology/approach

For an enhanced understanding of the impact of spatial arrangements of public spaces plan on the effective implementation of social distancing this study has used the space syntax analysis method. The MPSP clubhouse building in Penang, Malaysia was selected as the case study. The level of permeability and wayfinding were determined in the building plan and were illustrated using photoshop software to depict the interrelation between the indoor spaces and building circulation. Graphs of the depth of space were used to analyze the level of permeability and wayfinding to illustrate the possibility of social distancing in the plan.

Findings

The result of the study shows the significant role of proper plan layout design on social distancing. While clear and direct wayfinding can positively be associated with more effective social distancing, the inefficient design of user access, inappropriate locations of multiple entry and exit and indefinite directions of users' inside buildings can impose slight limitations. The average level of permeability might suggest ineffective spatial arrangement, ignoring the needs of spatial segregation. The study further found that the linear plan layouts with proper zoning and effective management strategies can be considered a proper layout to facilitate social distancing and the spread of COVID-19.

Originality/value

The current study is unique in terms of examination of the spatial configuration of linear public spaces plan layout for possible temporary adaptability to curb disease spread during the unexpected advent of a pandemic. Based on researchers' best of knowledge it is the first time that the impact of recreational space design on social distancing has been examined. The study also originally sheds light on the fact that the commonly used guideline for the social distancing of 1–2 m between 2 persons, in reality, is practically inadequate given the nature of the sports activities.

Details

International Journal of Building Pathology and Adaptation, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-4708

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2017

Ayça Arslan and Türkan Ulusu Uraz

It has recently come to light that there is an increasing demand for a new type of small house design, which vary in area from 20 square metres to 100 square metres and…

Abstract

It has recently come to light that there is an increasing demand for a new type of small house design, which vary in area from 20 square metres to 100 square metres and even more. Being remarkably different from traditional types of spatial organizations, the new house types present an open plan concept with a highly flexible and adaptable spatial arrangement that exhibit diverse functional spaces within one open, integrated space.

In light of this, the main aim of this study is to reveal the new dynamics of spatial organization found in today's small house types and identify the significant changes in the contemporary design approaches to small house layouts which have evolved from a need for minimized space usage and a requirement for diverse living spatiality.

Subsequently, thirty houses have been chosen to be analysed for the purpose of this study to reveal the differences between integrated and segregated spatial organizations in regard to flexibility, adaptability, transformability and permeability within the spaces. In addition to this, the new spatial relations will be overviewed considering spatial depth, interpenetration and density to define more implicit organizations which are able to expand constantly and accommodate different functional spaces in one open space with the help of spatial identifiers.

The main focus of this research study concentrates on the above mentioned dynamic forms of spatiality that change from being weak to strong, implicit to explicit and indistinct to clearly defined spaces. These forms are measured, analysed and basically compare by means of a space syntax application on the values of the space and convex maps of the thirty selected houses.

In summary, the analysis and measurement of the spatial characteristics of contemporary small houses in this sphere include both theoretical and empirical components. Firstly, the study discusses the basic definitions of spatial relations and organizations. Secondly, the space syntax method was used to test and compare new spatial design approaches by means of the Mean Depth, Mean Integration, Basic Difference Factor and Space Link Ratio values mainly to clarify how the spatiality changes according to the size although the plan type stays the same as 1+1.

Details

Open House International, vol. 42 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0168-2601

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Article
Publication date: 22 February 2021

Ali Zabihi, Mina Safizadeh and Massoomeh Hedayati Marzbali

Hospital landscape is not a useless space within hospital buildings anymore. It is considered as a supportive area providing mental and physical peace. However, the…

Abstract

Purpose

Hospital landscape is not a useless space within hospital buildings anymore. It is considered as a supportive area providing mental and physical peace. However, the planting design of the hospital landscape and the way it should be in order to not disrupt wayfinding performance is neglected. This paper, which is a case study, aims at investigating the effects of planting design in Kerman hospitals’ landscapes on the users’ wayfinding using space syntax techniques.

Design/methodology/approach

This research focuses on the effects of planting design on the users’ wayfinding in hospitals. In so doing, library research, computer simulation and analysis with the University College London (UCL) Depthmap software, and comparison techniques are used. Based on axial maps, the measures of integration, connectivity and intelligibility are considered for analysing the wayfinding process of individuals.

Findings

The findings show that planting configurations in the hospital landscape can affect individuals’ wayfinding. Integrated and regular planting design in addition to combining planted areas with the hospital buildings can pave the way for intelligible space and easier wayfinding.

Originality/value

According to the authors’ knowledge, the current study is the first to use the space syntax techniques in the health-care landscape architecture in terms of planting design and wayfinding. As wayfinding is an important issue in health-care spaces, the study findings can greatly help the health-care building designers and the related organizations to pay attention to the hospital landscape as much as hospital indoors.

Details

Journal of Facilities Management , vol. 19 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1472-5967

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Article
Publication date: 1 September 2021

Mostafa Alani and Akel Ismail Kahera

This paper aims out to analyze the confluence of spatial analysis and computational design strategies to support the reestablishment of Mosul's city housing fabric…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims out to analyze the confluence of spatial analysis and computational design strategies to support the reestablishment of Mosul's city housing fabric. According to a UN-Habitat report, Mosul suffered from catastrophic losses on an urban scale, resulting in a housing crisis that requires a large-scale response. However, the need for immediate shelters might lead to a rapid, uninformed reconstruction process, causing the loss of the architectural identity that the city accumulated over the years.

Design/methodology/approach

The study utilizes a two-phase sequential research method. In Phase 1, the study applies space syntax techniques to transform the floor plans of the collected traditional and contemporary houses into “quantifiable data.” This phase aims to identify design criteria that capture the “spatial configuration” of both types of houses. In the subsequent phase, the study utilizes the identified design criteria to develop a genetic algorithm inspired by traditional and contemporary practice that facilitates an informed design process.

Findings

The outcome of the study indicates that informed computational synthesis can assist in generating multiplicities floor plan layouts that mimic the inner spatial configuration of existing traditional courtyard houses and contemporary noncourtyard houses. In addition, the developed genetic algorithm was able to generate hybridized design solutions that have been spatially validated.

Originality/value

The study concludes with observations linking informed computational synthesis to the postwar construction process as a remedial methodology to analyze and redesign Mosul's city fabric in an informed, affordable and accessible fashion.

Details

Archnet-IJAR: International Journal of Architectural Research, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2631-6862

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Article
Publication date: 7 September 2021

Reza Askarizad, Akram Dadashpour, Javad Faghirnavaz, Jinliao He and Hossein Safari

The vulnerability of worn-out textures in the face of natural disasters is one of the most significant challenges that have forced planners and urban managers to intervene…

Abstract

Purpose

The vulnerability of worn-out textures in the face of natural disasters is one of the most significant challenges that have forced planners and urban managers to intervene in these structures. In this context, the new-urbanism, or the new urbanization, movement is one of the most novel approaches. This paper aims to organizing one of the worn-out neighborhoods in Rudsar, northern Iran with an approach toward the new urbanism.

Design/methodology/approach

The procedure adopted in this research is a combination of both quantitative and qualitative practices with an applied approach. Therefore, through utilizing the analytical hierarchy process (AHP) and space syntax methods, the principles of the new urbanism are examined using the Expert Choice and Depthmap software. Subsequently, the appropriate priorities are mentioned for organizing the neighborhood with the new-urbanism approach using the building information system (BIM) and strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) techniques.

Findings

The findings of this study indicate that among the main characteristics of the new urbanism, walkability is recognized as the most important factor. Afterward, the components of maintaining the traditional structure of neighborhoods and connectivity were in the second and third ranks, respectively, of importance. Accordingly, by identifying the societal potential of roads according to their spatial configuration, it is possible to boost walkability, as well as economic prosperity in these areas.

Originality/value

The combination and correlation of the four utilized methods in this research can be adopted in the future studies as a new outlook of the mixed methods in the field of urban studies.

Details

Smart and Sustainable Built Environment, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-6099

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 2015

Antoni Montañana, Carmen Llinares and Álvaro f. Page

Currently many real estate developers offer their products through their websites. The aim of this medium is not only to facilitate understanding of the building, but also…

Abstract

Currently many real estate developers offer their products through their websites. The aim of this medium is not only to facilitate understanding of the building, but also to capture the attention of potential customers, provoking feelings and emotions that influence the purchase decision, especially in the case of off-plan property sales. Understanding the cognitive factors behind customers' evaluation processes prior to a purchase is of great interest for defining successful design criteria.

The interior space of the property is one of the most important aspect in users' purchase decisions.

The paper aims to determine which property design elements in floor plans provoke the emotions users use to describe its interior design.

A field study was carried out on a sample of 75 individuals who evaluated a set of images of real estate promotions.

The results show that the landings and corridors are fundamental; the area must be spacious so that larger surface areas score best; the living room must be well differentiated from the bedrooms; the valuation of the space depends on the graphic form of presentation, the use of warm colours and the degree of detail in the plans has a positive influence on the assessment.

This information may be of great interest for architects and designers in the graphic representation of the space.

Details

Open House International, vol. 40 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0168-2601

Keywords

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