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PARAMETRIC INTEGRATED DESIGN PROCESS Attempt at solving Malta’s ‘Loss of Architecture’

ZACK XUEREB CONTI A dissertation presented to the Faculty for the Built Environment in part fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Engineering and Architecture (Honours) at the University of Malta th

Friday, 17 June 2011


ABSTRACT

Zack Xuereb Conti Parametric Integrated Design Process Attempt at solving Malta’s ‘Loss of Architecture’

The Architecture of a building can be defined as the result of the consistent consideration of important parameters from conception to the end of the design process.

There has been a recent boom in the construction of various types of buildings in Malta. The trend being to demolish various properties with the intention of developing them into apartment blocks, generally prioritising income gain. Individual cases demonstrate how the profit parameter has hijacked sensitive design, to the extent where important design parameters are ignored during the design process of the building. This ‘loss of Architecture of a building’ is extremely evident when moving along one of the Maltese coastlines such as Sliema, St.Paul’s Bay and Xemxija, as well as through several residential areas in major villages and towns. This dissertation investigates and challenges the traditional design process. The main problem was found to be that the relationship between the main role players, the clients and the architect, is of a hierarchical nature whereby the former dominates over the latter party. This generally results in the lack of the consideration of important parameters. Local case studies were investigated to highlight the effects of such lack of consideration, thus proving their importance. The author proposes that this domination may potentially be resolved by implementing one holistic integrated parametric design process that will reorganise the role players and their input, introduce all hard parameters at the conception of the design process and adopt the use of a non-dominated sorting process using a generative algorithm. Separate populations of optimal building forms and spatial building programmes will result in bottom-up, top-down processes respectively. Such spatial programmes will then be mapped onto the building form, eventually resulting in a pareto set of results for the client to choose from. This integrated design process will aid the architect to simultaneously consider all parameters that conceivably effect the architecture of the proposed building in order to produce the optimum, possible, temporary design for the proposed building which satisfies all requirements. B.E.&A. (Hons) Keywords: PARAMETERS; INTEGRATED; GENERATIVE ALGORITHM; COMPUTATIONAL;

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UNIVERISTY OF MALTA FACULTY/INSTITUTE/CENTRE FOR THE BUILT ENVIRONMENT DECLARATION Student’s Code: 0248887(M) Student’s Name & Surname: Zack Xuereb Conti Course: Bachelor of Engineering and Architecture (Honours) Title of Dissertation: Parametric Integrated Design Process

I hereby declare that I am the legitimate author of this dissertation/thesis. I further confirm that this work is original and unpublished.

______________________ Signature of Student

____________ Date

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Acknowledgments

Firstly, I would like to thank Professor Denis de Lucca for his guidance throughout the past five years. I would like to show great appreciation towards Perit Matthew J. Mercieca for thoroughly guiding me throughout the evolution of what initially was the idea of formulating an ‘Ideal Equation’ to produce good Architecture. Perit Mercieca helped me sort my ideas into one integrated process. I am grateful for the countless times he patiently agreed to meet with me. Great appreciation also goes to Perit Ira Miodragovic who guided me throughout the computational aspect of the process and introduced me to biological mimicry in computational sorting processes. Perit Miodragovic has also dedicated countless time in meeting with me to discuss and develop the Integrated Design Process. The idea of an integrated approach in design involves individuals from various professions at conception of a project until its completion. This in fact is reflected in the following people that kindly provided useful information in different specialized fields: Dr. Maria Attard Dr. Vincent M Buhagiar Steve Demicoli Dr. Saviour Formosa Perit Ramon Gauci Professor Alex Torpiano I would also like to thank the staff at Architecture Project (AP) at giving me the opportunity to present the idea of the Integrated Design Process and received favourable feedback. I dedicate this dissertation to my parents, without who’s help and support, I would have not made it so far.

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Table of Contents 1 1.1! 1.2! 1.3! 1.4!

Identifying the Problem .......................................................................................................1! Introduction .............................................................................................................................1! Development in Malta .............................................................................................................1! Parameter prioritisation at the cost of important parameters .................................................2! Conclusion ..............................................................................................................................3!

2 2.1! 2.2! 2.3! 2.4! 2.5! 2.6!

The Profession .....................................................................................................................4! Introduction .............................................................................................................................4! Brief Historical Overview of The Profession ...........................................................................4! Brief Historical Overview of the Local Course Structure ........................................................5! The Future of the Local Course Structure ..............................................................................5! Professional Legislation .........................................................................................................6! Conclusion ..............................................................................................................................6!

3 3.1! 3.2! 3.3! 3.4! 3.5! 3.6! 3.7! 3.8! 3.9!

The Importance of the Consideration of Certain Parameters at the Conception of the Design Process ....................................................................................................................7! Introduction .............................................................................................................................7! Case Study 1.1 - The lack of consideration of the orientation. ...............................................8! Case Study 1.2 - The consideration of the orientation. ........................................................10! Case Study 1.3 – Alternative for the consideration of the orientation ..................................11! Case Study 2.1 – The lack of the consideration of the surrounding environment ................12! Case Study 2.2 – The consideration of the surrounding environment .................................13! Case Study 3.1 – The lack of the consideration of building services ...................................16! Case Study 3.2 – The consideration of building services .....................................................17! Case Study 3.2 – The result of the consideration of multiple parameters. ...........................19!

4 4.1! 4.2! 4.4! 4.5! 4.6! 4.7!

Digital Parametric Tools ....................................................................................................21! Introduction ...........................................................................................................................21! Performative Design Paradigm ............................................................................................22! Generative Design Paradigm ...............................................................................................37! Generative Performative Paradigm ......................................................................................54! Integrated Generative Performative Design Approach .........................................................60! Conclusion ............................................................................................................................64!

5 Break-down of Parameters ................................................................................................65! 5.1! Introduction ...........................................................................................................................65! 5.2! List of examples of parameters broken down into their respective sub-parameters ............66! 6 6.1! 6.2! 6.3!

Translation of Sub-Parameters Into Mathematical Data/Digital Data ............................68! Introduction ...........................................................................................................................68! Conversion Process .............................................................................................................68! Coordinate Based System ....................................................................................................72!

7 7.1! 7.2! 7.3! 7.4! 7.5! 7.6!

Geographic Information Systems (G.I.S.) ........................................................................73! Introduction ...........................................................................................................................73! Geographic Information Systems (G.I.S.) ............................................................................73! G.I.S. Data ............................................................................................................................73! G.I.S. and 3D Modelling .......................................................................................................77! Real-time G.I.S. ....................................................................................................................78! G.I.S. and its Integration .......................................................................................................79!

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Proposal for an Integrated Computational Design Process in a G.I.S. Spatial Environment ................................................................................................81 Introduction ...........................................................................................................................81! Role Players .........................................................................................................................81! Parameters / Sub-Parameters ..............................................................................................86! The Design Environment ......................................................................................................87! Sorting Processes ................................................................................................................87! Client Types .........................................................................................................................89!

8.1! 8.2! 8.3! 8.4! 8.5! 8.6!

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8.7! The Role of the Architect ......................................................................................................90! 8.8! Conclusion ............................................................................................................................91! 8.9! Further Research .................................................................................................................92!

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List of Figures

Figure 1: Overhangs function both as a terrace for the upper floor and solar protection for the lower floor. (greenmnp, 2007) .................................................................................10! Figure 2: The adoption of the correct solar angle was translated into the angle of the windows (left). This apartment block is dimensionally similar to many apartment blocks in Malta therefore allowing the possibility of adopting such an approach (right). (DESIGN DAILY, 2010) .....................................................................................11! Figure 3: The building programme is adjusted in order to increase public space whilst also allowing open space in front of the neighbouring building. (BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group, 2008) .................................................................................................................13! Figure 4: Faces are shaved off the form of the building to allow visibility of the sky from the neighbouring building. (BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group, 2008) ..............................................13! Figure 5: Faces are shaved off the form of the building to allow visibility of the sky from the neighbouring building. (BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group, 2008) ..............................................14! Figure 6: Diagrammatic representation of such a process. (BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group, 2008) ......14! Figure 7: Diagrammatic representation of such a process. (BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group, 2008) ......15! Figure 8: Elevation of the proposed building indicating the line of sight. (Mercieca, 2010) ...........19! Figure 9: Rendered image of the proposed mixed-use building. (Mercieca, 2010) .......................20! Figure 10: The visibility analysis displayed here shows the amount and quality of views to the outside mapped over the floor area of an office. (Integrated Design Lab Bozeman, 2010) ............................................................................................................24! Figure 11: “Ecotect analyzes and measures lines of sight and visual shadows. This allows a comprehensive understanding of a building’s relations within its neighboring context. This will also help to define solar envelopes and identify acoustic shadows.” (Integrated Design Lab - Bozeman, 2010) ..................................................25! Figure 12: “Ecotect analyzes and measures lines of sight and visual shadows. This allows a comprehensive understanding of a building’s relations within its neighboring context. This will also help to define solar envelopes and identify acoustic shadows.”(Integrated Design Lab - Bozeman, 2010) ...................................................25! Figure 13: “Shading devices can be tested and optimized for different building orientations. Using accurate solar position data, shading devices can be modified for specific periods of the year or times of the day. (Integrated Design Lab - Bozeman, 2010) ..................................................................................................26! Figure 14: “ A detailed thermal model can isolate distinct thermal zones and analyse each in terms of passive gains and losses, temperature profiles, and supplemental load contributions. (Integrated Design Lab - Bozeman, 2010) ......................................27! Figure 15: “ Ecotect can create accurate sky dome representations for a given location. Shading masks and vertical sky component symbols can be distributed on the sky dome to help analyze daylight factors and solar access.” (Integrated Design Lab - Bozeman, 2010) ......................................................................................28! Figure 16: Climate data such as prevailing winds can also be considered via a weather database. . ....................................................................................................................29! Figure 17: Summer Insolation within the vaulted villa. (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008) .......................31! Figure 18: Lighting Analysis of the apartments clad with a concrete fragmented screen. (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008) ............................................................................................31! Figure 19: A figure of the summer shading analysis. (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008) .........................32!

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Figure 20: A figure of the winter shading analysis. (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008) .............................32! Figure 21: Lighting Analysis of louvered apartments. (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008) ........................33! Figure 22: A User Screen shot of .................................................................................................34! Solar Control© (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008) ....................................................................................34! Figure 23: Instant shadow mask rendering as one adjusts the dimensions and properties of an opening and its respective shading system in Solar Control© (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008) ................................................................................................................35! Figure 24: A User Screen shot of Solar Control© (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008) .............................35! Figure 25: This figure illustrates a screenshot of a user- created algorithm in Grasshopper®(right window) running in conjunction within Rhinoceros (background window). ...................................................................................................38! Figure 26: This figure illustrates typical objects such as components and parameters available within Grasshopper® to create a definition (algorithm) (Payne & Issa, 2009, p. 8). ....................................................................................................................39! Figure 27: This figure illustrates a curved plane, simply modelled in Rhino. (Fano, 2009) ...........40! Figure 28: This figure illustrates the truss component (left) being modelled via the algorithm in Grasshopper (right). (Fano, 2009) ............................................................................40! Figure 29: This figure illustrates the finalised truss component (left). (Fano, 2009) ......................41! Figure 30: This figure illustrates the slider object connected to the slider object therefore the ability to control the fillet radius (R). (Fano, 2009) .................................................41! Figure 31: This figure illustrates the algorithm (right) and the divided curved plane surface (left). (Fano, 2009) ........................................................................................................41! Figure 32: This figure illustrates the application of the algorithm (right) onto the divided curved plane surface (left). (Fano, 2009) ......................................................................42! Figure 33: This figure (left) illustrates to warping the curved plane surface within Rhino without and the ability of the assigned components to adjust to it. (Fano, 2009) .........42! Figure 34: This figure illustrates the increase in segments within the divided plane via the sliders within the algorithm (right) resulting in the multiplied components (left). (Fano, 2009) .................................................................................................................43! Figure 35: This figure illustrates a user-screenshot of a typical modelling scenario. The window on the far right displays the model and all its geometrical points, the central window displays the user defined, design algorithm and the window on the far left displays the transaction file!"#$%!(Harrison, 2007).........................................45! Figure 36: The red square (left) represents a node whilst the blue rectangle (right) represents a load. The blue and red lines represent the stresses within the specified 2D region. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009) ...........47! Figure 37: After the nodes and loads are specified, the optimisation process follows which starts to form the best, possible structural form. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009) ..................................................................................................47! Figure 38: The end of the optimising process results in the best, possible structural form, suiting the given criteria. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 20082009) ........ ....................................................................................................................48! Figure 39: After the dimensions of the 3D space were defined, the quantity, dimensions and location of the node/s (red cube) and load/s (blue cube) are specified. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009) ............................................48! Figure 40: Optimisation in the process. Structure starts to be visualised as volumetric fog. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009) ............................................49! Figure 41: Further optimisation. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009) ..........49!

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Figure 42: Once optimisation is done, a test is run simulating the load (blue cube) at a particular displacement inputted by the user, still visualised as volumetric fog. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009) ............................................50! Figure 43: The iso-surface can also then be rendered at a particular iso value specified by the user. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009) .............................50! Figure 44: Optimised structure rendered at a lower iso level. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009) .................................................................................51! Figure 45: A section of the optimised structure can also be visualised. Such sections display the stress (above) or density maps. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009) ..................................................................................................51! Figure 46 (all of the below): This software is flexible to different scenarios involving different amounts and dimensions of loads and constraints. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009) .................................................................................52! Figure 47: This figure displays the uploaded Rhino model of the atrium of the Heritage Vilniu Museum. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009) ..............................................................54! Figure 48: This figure displays the model under orientation-analysis where the user inputs the particular geographical coordinates of the site whilst the month, day and time are varied. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009) ......................................................................55! Figure 49: This figure still displays the model under orientation-analysis. It must be noted that an initial formation of the openings’ skin started to form as a result of the specified orientation. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009) ......................................................55! Figure 50: This figure illustrates the generation process of the rays at various angles as a result of the specified orientations. These rays will eventually define the openings. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009) .......................................................................56! Figure 51: This figure illustrates the mean and open directions of the rays following the generation process. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009) .......................................................56! Figure 52: This figure illustrates the assigning of the various openings to the surface of the model. The depth of the openings and opening percentage can also be controlled. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009) ......................................................................57! Figure 53: This figure illustrates the assigned openings, the threshold of which can be controlled parametrically by the user. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009) ............................57! Figure 54: This figure illustrates the possibility of rotation of the openings, parametrically (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009) ........................................................................................58! Figure 55: This figure illustrates a specific weather simulation in reaction to the model. The user-interface allows for the weather conditions to vary such as wind direction and speed. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009) .....................................................................58! Figure 56: This figure illustrates a wind, weather simulation. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009).........59! Figure 57: This figure illustrates a combined wind and rain, weather simulation. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009) ...........................................................................................................59! Figure 58: This figure illustrates a user-screenshot of a typical data-inputting scenario within the Ecotect® feature within Generative Components®. Data includes weather data from Ecotect® and terrain data. ..............................................................61! Figure 59: This figure displays the model of the building being analysed (tower) in selection mode whilst the zoomed up view of the Ecotect parameter in the algorithm (bottom left). ..................................................................................................................61! Figure 60: This figure displays the model of the building under Ecotect® analysis within Generative Components®. This displays the integration of the two, where the analysis data is being mapped onto the geometry of the model within Generative Components®. ..............................................................................................................62!

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Figure 61: This figure displays the model of the building under Ecotect® analysis as illustrated in Figure 60. However a translation in a point on the model has been made. Whilst this changed the form of the building, the change in colours on the Ecotect® analysis results (map projected on the building) have also changed indicating the real-time relationship. .............................................................................63! Figure 62: This figure continues to illustrate the real-time relationship between the change in form and effected change in analaysis . ....................................................................63! Figure 63: Breakdown of each parameter. ....................................................................................65! Figure 64: This figure indicates the parametric framework of the form. (De Biswas, 2003, p. 5) .............. ....................................................................................................................69! Figure 65: This figure indicates the optimum building form (B) in vector form with the indicated variables. (De Biswas, 2003, p. 5) .................................................................70! Figure 66: Heat Parameter in terms of the defined variables. (De Biswas, 2003, p. 6) .................70! Figure 67: Wind Parameter in terms of the defined variables. (De Biswas, 2003, p. 7) ................71! Figure 68: Light Parameter in terms of the defined variables. (De Biswas, 2003, p. 7) ................71! Figure 69: One of the optimum building volumes obtained as a result of the sorting process. (De Biswas, 2003, p. 10) ...............................................................................................72! Figure 70: A user shot of the Map Server. (Malta Environment & Planning Authority, 2001) ........74! Figure 71: Terrain modelling of the Qawra/Bugibba case study area showing the extruded buildings as at present. (Conchin, 3D-GIS and Spatial Planning, 2005) ......................74! Figure 72: Terrain modelling of the Qawra/Bugibba case study area showing the extruded buildings as at present and including a fictitious proposal of a tower development. (Conchin, 3D-GIS and Spatial Planning, 2005) ......................................75! Figure 73: Terrain modelling of the Medieval city of Mdina: in this case the building blocks were also included in the visualisation exercise. (Dr. Saviour Formosa, MEPA) ..........77! Figure 74: The sub-parameters, are each, inputted individually into the search process to avoid domination. ..........................................................................................................82! Figure 75: The role-players in the deisgn process are the source of the parameters. This figure shows an example of a role player producing one parameter. ...........................82! Figure 76: This figure shows an example of a role player with more than one parameter. ...........83! Figure 77: The role of the structural engineer applied to the parameter ‘break down’ shown in Figure 75. ..................................................................................................................84! Figure 78: GIS spatial role player break-down subdivided into its hard parameters and subparameters. ...................................................................................................................85! Figure 79: Subdivided into hard and soft parameters and sub-parameters. .................................86! Figure 80: The over all proposed Integrated Design Process. (Enlarged version found in Appendix A). .................................................................................................................89!

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List of Plates Plate 1: An example of a monotonous block of apartments very similar to many others present around the island. (Photograph by Author) ............................................................1! Plate 2: South facing, 8-storey block of apartments on the Tigne seafront. ....................................8! Plate 3: Aerial shot and orientation of block of apartments on Tigne seafront. (Google Earth©)......... ......................................................................................................................8! Plate 4: The south face of the building. The photovoltaic-cladded louvers exist as a shading device and also energy absorber. .....................................................................................10! Plate 5: St. Domenic street in Sliema where the new block of apartments in the background has drastically intruded on direct views from the University Heights. (Sliema Residents Association : Ghaqda Residenti Sliema, --) .....................................................12! Plate 6: Mechanical cooling services ‘added’ onto to the façade. This building is situated on the Strand in Sliema therefore forms part .........................................................................16! Plate 7: Pre-conceived services and fire route envelope within the MMA building in Marsa. (Photograph by Author).....................................................................................................17! Plate 8: The service-less façade of the MMA building in Marsa (Architecture Project, 2007) .......18!

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1 1.1

Identifying the Problem Introduction “Haec autem ita fieri debent ut habeatur ratio firmitatis utilitatis venustatis.�(Vitruvius, 25BC) According to Vitruvius, a good building, regardless of its typology must satisfy the three principles of firmitatis utilitatis venustatis. which more or less translates to Durability, Utility and Beauty. These principles, have individually been reinterpreted to the particular period of time. Durability refers to structure, where the building should stand up robustly and be maintained well. Utility refers to its functionality, where the space should be planned in order to satisfy the particular users’ requirements. While beauty refers to the effect of the aesthetics on both the users of the building and the public. This chapter will discuss how these fundamental values have been compromised for lesser quality in the current development scene in Malta. The effects and causes are discussed further on.

1.2

Development in Malta Plate 1: An example of a monotonous block of apartments very similar to many others present around the island. (Photograph by Author)

The development boom has brought about the common trend of the demolition of various types of property with the aim of developing the site. Most commonly such construction is that of apartment blocks. Malta has become a land of monopoly (Bugeja, 2009) where the word

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‘site’ has been replaced by the word ‘plot’, whereby it is valued in relation to its revenue potential. This construction boom has brought about the loss of these fundamental principles where quantity prevails over quality. “Most are products of speculative ventures, where quality, both in terms of design and construction is sacrificed to profit. A few apartment developments, at the higher end of the price market, do offer better quality in terms of construction and finishes, if not always in design.” (England, 2009) These typologies of apartment blocks have brought about an aesthetical monotony whereby almost literal copies of the same block can be found in separate localities. This shows the element of mass construction rather than one specific to the site, thus the lack in communication between the design project on site and its surrounding urban environment. “I purposely use the term ‘construction industry’ rather than architecture, since architecture to me has always implied beauty, harmony and a sense of emotion; qualities all conspicuously absent from the local building scenario of the last decade.” (England, 2009)

1.3

Parameter prioritisation at the cost of important parameters Whilst the development of new buildings is an important contribution towards the constantly progressing city, it is important that each individual building is designed sensitively. Each individual building has a direct effect on the urban townscape as a whole. Developers search for an efficient, architectural firm that produces and processes a project in minimal time. The traditional design process allows direct pressure from the developer to maximise possible number of units whilst producing speedy drawings consequently allowing no time for the consideration of important design parameters.(Chapter 3). This race against time has brought about a paradox in the term ‘efficient’ where non-efficient buildings are being designed in a short time as passive methods are not being employed, again, due to the lack of such consideration. The problem of the monotonously, mass-constructed blocks of apartments mentioned in 1.2, are a cause of a design process that simply conforms with design parameters stated within the Policy and Design Guidance Document only, in order to solely guarantee a building permit in the shortest possible time. It is a sad reflection of our times that with a more complex and legalistic planning process, the success of a local architect is measured on the basis of his/her efficacy to facilitate an application through the myriad bureaucracy of the MEPA process with the ultimate objective being that of securing a permit. (Thake, 2010) The measure of success of being commissioned today does not rest on one’s ability as a sensitive designer or being in tune with environmental issues but rather no how capable one is in maximising the sheer scale of developments and securing a permit in the shortest possible time. (Thake, 2010)

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This process allows the lack of consideration of important and fundamental parameters. It is evident that when a parameter such as profit is prioritised, less time is allowed for such consideration (individual cases discussed further in Chapter 3). This pressure has produced an imbalance within the role players’ relationship of a typical, local design project whereby the contractor has gained dictatorial power over the architect and society. By society reference is being made to the context surrounding the proposed building. This is one of the main causes of a traditional, hierarchical design process. The repercussions of such situations are facilitating the lack of consideration of important design parameters at design stage. Chapter 3 highlights the importance of such consideration by discussing individual case studies. The fact that buildings are still being built with the exclusion of these important parameters, outlines the fact that there is a need of the inclusion of these important parameters within the policy guidelines The lack of consideration of these important parameters at the cost of the prioritisation of other parameters such as profit and time is therefore having a direct impact on the ‘loss of the Architecture of the buildings’ in Malta.

1.4

Conclusion This chapter has outlined the following main problems causing this ‘loss of Architecture’: i.

A lack of inclusion of important and fundamental parameters within the MEPA Policy and Design Guidance Document and their consideration.

ii. Opportunities for prioritisation over important parameters to occur. iii. An imbalance within the role players’ relationship due to a hierarchical design process. Thus, there is need of a reorganised design process in which the role players are distinguished individually and their relationships reorganised. The reorganised relationships should not be hierarchical in order to avoid the potential abuse of power. This brings about the aim of this dissertation where the author attempts to solve this ‘loss of Architecture‘ by attempting to design an integrated-design process in such a way to provide a balanced relationship between all role players of a design project. Each role player exists individually where, each individually produces a number of parameters, which are inputted into the design process together with all the other parameters. These paramaters all exist at the same priority level thus avoiding a hierarchical system.

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2 2.1

The Profession Introduction The aim of this chapter is to briefly describe how the course structure at University has changed over time from one integrated profession into a streamed and specialised one. Section 2.5 discusses the lack of integration between Architecture and Structural Engineering as a result of the incoherent legislation.

2.2

Brief Historical Overview of The Profession th

The origin of the profession in Malta dates back to the 16 century where “ the terms ‘’mastru’’ (master), “mghallem” and “perit” (both meaning knowledgeable or expert, the former of semitic, and the latter of latin, origin) were interchangeably used to indicate this particular role in construction.” (Torpiano, 2011, pp. 17-18) “The official Italian term of “Perit” loosely translated into English as “architect”, but representing more a sort of hybrid architect-engineer)!” (Torpiano, 2011, p. 18) The first Ordinance regulating the profession of, and award of “warrant” for, “Architect and Civil Engineer” was promulgated in 1919, and the self-regulating Chamber of Architects and Civil Engineers, (a form of local chartered institution) was, consequently, set up in 1920. This term brought about the combination of two professions in an integrated manner. Such an integrated profession consisted not only of the common tasks of an architect such as designing the building but also tasks such as road construction, construction of water extraction and distribution systems, the design and construction of sewage disposal systems, and even, initially, to the supervision and commissioning of the first electric power installations. (Torpiano, 2011, p. 18). The profession was unchanged until the year 2000 where it was replaced by the Periti Act. “ The main relevant changes in this new legislation were the revision of the academic training requirments that qualified a candiadate for the award of the “warrant” – introducing concepts derived from EU General Professions Directive (89/48/EEC, 1989) – and the recovery of the appellation “perit”, in preference of the “hybrid” title used hitherto.” (Torpiano, 2011, p. 18). “Architects” and “Engineers” were now two separate professions.

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2.3

Brief Historical Overview of the Local Course Structure The course structure within the local University has changed over time. In the 1960’s, the training programme for architects was organized into a two-tier (3+2), five-year course leading to a Bachelors degree in Architecture. The separation of the two professions meant, more specified professions. “In 1972, the University reverted to an integrated, five-year, course structure leading to the award of Bachelor of Engineering and Architecture. This was deemed to be more appropriate to the local needs of the industry!” (Torpiano, 2011) In 1988, when the Faculty was re-established, the five-year course structure was extensively reviewed. In order to respond to the ever-widening range of disciplines that could be considered as relevant to the profession, the Faculty intro- duced the concept of streamed courses of study. The five-year course was divided into two parts, with the three-year Part 1 retained as practically mandatory for all students, whilst the two-year Part 2 was organized into Streams of Study, leading, however, to the common degree of Bachelor of Engineering and Architecture. (Torpiano, 2011) The course structure has remained unchanged up unttil the academic year 2009/2010 except for the eventual merging of the Infrastructural Stream with the Structural Engineering.

2.4

The Future of the Local Course Structure “The five-year degree leading to Bachelor of Engineering and Architecture is being phased out, and it is being replaced by a two-cycle degree system, which conforms to the Bologna Declaration.” (Faculty for the Built Environment, 2011). The first tier of the proposed ‘two-cycle’ system consists of three years in gaining multidisciplinary skills in various subjects,“ first of all, common to many of the professional disciplines the candidates wish to follow in subsequent years.” (Faculty for the Built Environment, 2011) and to further surround the students by a holistic environment. Such an environment is crucial for these future professionals, to eventually assist them to think in a holistic-conscious manner, when taking decisions in their respective, specialized profession. Secondly, the range of study-units offered allow a greater degree of choice, than is currently the case, so as to ensure that students take those subjects which are of relevance in the context of the programmes they intend to follow. (Faculty for the Built Environment, 2011) The mentioned wide range of choice will offer students to specialize in hybrid Degrees as a result of the flexibility being given.

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2.5

Professional Legislation Whilst the course structure was streamed, the legislation lacked to update coherently. This in fact reflects in the fact that the Design Architect is awarded with an identical warrant to that being awarded to the Structural Engineer. This allows the opportunity of ‘inferior Architecture’ as a result of prioritisation of parameters, by the professional, as discussed in Chapter 1. The author does not propose to provide a specialised warrant for the Architect however the warrant must be rethought of in an integrated context. The legislative problem is that, the inclusive warrant, that provides the power to verify the stability of the structure and the abiding of the sanitary laws, must not also offer the power to verify the completion of the project. The current situation also allows scenarios where a project is given the go-ahead after minimally conforming to the basic structural requirements and the sanitary law, whilst lacking the consideration of other important parameters that other professionals/consultants would provide to optimise the project. Torpiano (2011), states, “The “tension” between training for architects and that for engineers has been difficult to understand, and to address, in Malta;”(p.4) The author believes, that the fact, that an identical warrant is shared between Architects and Structural Engineer, adds to the cause of the “degree of separation” (Torpiano, 2011) between the two. These professions must on the contrary, exist within an integrated environment where direct consultation at the conception of the project is possible.

2.6

Conclusion The author would like to highlight the importance of the presence of a holistic environment throughout the entire course structure, being of a thorough level during the first tier, and present in the second (specialized). In comparison to the integrated profession mentioned in 2.2, the streaming will produce professionals of higher specialized skill, trained to work in a holistic environment thus, collectively producing better end results. A product, as a result of a team, made up of high skilled, specialized individuals working in an integrated manner, is more successful than that of a ‘jack of all trades’.

6


3

3.1

The Importance of the Consideration of Certain Parameters at the Conception of the Design Process Introduction The aim of this chapter is to highlight the importance of the consideration of certain important parameters at the conceptual stages of a design process of a design project. Case studies of existing or proposed buildings will be used to identify the effects of the lack of consideration of certain parameters whilst others, the advantages of consideration. These case studies will also emphasize on the importance of the early inclusion of such parameters rather than a later ‘addition’.

7


3.2

Case Study 1.1 - The lack of consideration of the orientation. Plate 2: South facing, 8-storey block of apartments on the Tigne seafront.

This block of apartments (Plate 2) is situated directly on the sea front therefore enjoying direct views of the Valletta skyline and the surroundings. Each apartment façade consists mostly of large, glazed walls. Plate 3: Aerial shot and orientation of block of apartments on Tigne seafront. (Google EarthŠ)

8


The glazed faรงade mentioned previously lies on a southeast face therefore inviting direct, incident, southeast sunlight (Plate 3). The obvious purpose for the glazing (as seen in Plate 2) is that of taking advantage of the direct view of the Valletta skyline and the surroundings. The view factor directly increases the property value and therefore its parameter is maximized as much as possible. However a conflict is created, as the two parameters exist within the same orientation. This case study indicates the lack of consideration of the solar parameter where priority was given to the view parameter thus lacking in considering the orientation of the site. This caused large solar gain through the glazed faรงade resulting in warming up each apartment during a certain period of time during the day. th

The following questions were drafted and forwarded to a resident on the 4 floor of this block of apartments: 1) What times of day do you need to shut the blinds? Please specify summer and winter times. 2) Does it annoy you that you cannot always enjoy the view because the blinds have to be shut? 4) Do you require to use mechanical ventilation in summer to compensate for the heat generated through the south facing glazed windows?

The following are the replies to the above questions, respectively: 1) Summertime - 09.00 to 12.00 EF blind down, SF blind up 15.00 to 17.00 EF blind up, SF blind down other hours both blinds up 2) Wintertime -

09.00 to 14.00 EF blind down, SF blind up 14.00 to 16.00 EF blind up, SF blind down

2) Not worried as when one blind is down, the other is up - so we have a view all the time. 3) In summer we use natural ventilation via open doors and windows. Being on the seafront, we benefit from the cooler sea breezes. On some days in July and August we use air-conditioning in the open lounge, especially if it's a hot day with no breeze - but only occasionally. The above demonstrates how the building is not the optimal it could have been. The use of blinds could have been fully avoided thus allowing the resident to enjoy the full view at all times rather than partially at most times. Alternatives at obtaining the optimal solution are mentioned in 3.3 and 3.4.

9


3.3

Case Study 1.2 - The consideration of the orientation. Figure 1: Overhangs function both as a terrace for the upper floor and solar protection for the lower floor. (greenmnp, 2007)

The above case study indicates an alternative to a south facing apartment building where overhangs were used in order to provide shading from hot, direct Summer sun whilst allowing cool, Winter daylight. “This stepping south-oriented facade creates a trellis-like canopy system with the photovoltaics – along with some plantings – to both shade/passively cool the building, while maximizing the amount of south-facing PV installed. The hanging plants also contribute to offsetting [if only slightly] the CO2 produced by the building, which the architects [Mario Cucinella] already have to a minimum through the use of gas engines with electric generators to account for the remainder of the building’s energy needs [after the PV].” (greenmnp, 2007)

Plate 4: The south face of the building. The photovoltaic-cladded louvers exist as a shading device and also energy absorber. (greenmnp, 2007)

10


3.4

Case Study 1.3 – Alternative for the consideration of the orientation With regards to Case Study 1.1, the alternative (3.3) may not be feasible due to lack of space for terracing or due to design policy guidelines not allowing projection of such overhangs. However other options are possible such as the change in angle of the windowpane as displayed in Figure 2.

Figure 2: The adoption of the correct solar angle was translated into the angle of the windows (left). This apartment block is dimensionally similar to many apartment blocks in Malta therefore allowing the possibility of adopting such an approach (right). (DESIGN DAILY, 2010)

The above case study was proposed in Chicago where the best angle for glass to keep a Chicago apartment warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer is 71 degrees. “Architects Studio Gang have designed an entire high rise building based on the optimum angle with solar access and shading as its core concept.” (DESIGN DAILY, 2010) This approach has resulted in self-shaded, south-facing apartments drastically reducing air conditioning costs and energy usage. (DESIGN DAILY, 2010). “During the winter, the glass allows sun to enter the apartments for passive solar warming, decreasing the need for artificial heating.” (DESIGN DAILY, 2010). This case study highlights the importance of the balance between conflicting parameters. Such conflict most of the time contributes to an interesting form / ‘originality’ to the building. “When you find the dilemma in a project, that’s when you know what it’s really about. If there’s no conflict, no clash of interests, how are you going to make it interesting?” (Ingels, 2010) as cited in (Tischler, 2010)

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3.5

Case Study 2.1 – The lack of the consideration of the surrounding environment Plate 5: St. Domenic street in Sliema where the new block of apartments in the background has drastically intruded on direct views from the University Heights. (Sliema Residents Association : Ghaqda Residenti Sliema, --)

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3.6

Case Study 2.2 – The consideration of the surrounding environment Such a parameter consists of the consideration of many parameters such as building heights, building volume and so on. In a dense urban fabric, such as most localities in Malta, it is often the case where the site is surrounded by a dense fabric. The importance of the sensitivity of the surrounding buildings is often ignored. The following case study displays the form of the building resulting as a product of the effects and parameters produced by the sensitivity to the surrounding buildings.

Figure 3: The building programme is adjusted in order to increase public space whilst also allowing open space in front of the neighbouring building. (BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group, 2008)

Figure 4: Faces are shaved off the form of the building to allow visibility of the sky from the neighbouring building. (BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group, 2008)

13


Figure 5: Faces are shaved off the form of the building to allow visibility of the sky from the neighbouring building. (BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group, 2008)

Figure 6: Diagrammatic representation of such a process. (BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group, 2008)

14


Figure 7: Diagrammatic representation of such a process. (BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group, 2008)

15


3.7

Case Study 3.1 – The lack of the consideration of building services There exist several local case studies, which clearly indicate the lack of thought for the services of the building. Same as the lack of consideration of the other mentioned important parameters, these are then catered for as an ‘add on’ at a much later stage, sometimes by the tenants themselves (Plate 6) thus negatively effecting the aesthetics of the apartment block due to lack of order. Such a scenario highlights the lack of the inclusion of a building services engineer during the initial stages of the design process.

Plate 6: Mechanical cooling services ‘added’ onto to the façade. This building is situated on the Strand in Sliema. (Photograph by Author).

16


3.8

Case Study 3.2 – The consideration of building services The following case study is a local one. Although not an apartment block such as the one in contrast with, this office building was planned in an integrated way where the building services engineer and the architects worked together to produce an efficient building with regards to its services (Plate 5). “The building responds to the harsh environment created by the busy thoroughfare of Pinto Road by having its entrance facing the harbour thereby opening itself up to the natural light of its South facing orientation. A spine of service spaces placed just behind this North facing street facade further enhances this detachment.� (Architecture Project, 2007) Here, the services are used as a buffer zone between the busy road and the working environment. This was only possible by considering the building services parameter at the conception of the building program.

Plate 7: Pre-conceived services and fire route envelope within the MMA building in Marsa. (Photograph by Author).

17


Plate 8: The service-less faรงade of the MMA building in Marsa (Architecture Project, 2007).

.

18


3.9

Case Study 3.2 – The result of the consideration of multiple parameters. Figure 8: North Elevation of the proposed building indicating the glazed façade thus allowing natural daylight. (Mercieca, 2010)

Figure 8 and Figure 9 indicate a local case study highlighting the result of the consideration of a number of parameters. The shading device on the south-west façade (Figure 8) functions both as protection from the south west sun and as an envelope in hosting the elongated stairwell.

19


Figure 9: The south-west faรงade protected from direct solar heat . (Mercieca, 2010)

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4 4.1

Digital Parametric Tools Introduction The aim of this chapter is to describe existing digital tools that help the architect to constantly and consciously consider important parameters and aid to avoid their lack of use. “In general, two dominant design paradigms govern current digital design efforts in architecture: the Generative Design paradigm and the Performative Design paradigm.” (Fasoulaki, 2008) “Generative design can be broadly defined as an algorithmic or rule-based process through which various potential design solutions can be created. Generative design systems, such as cellular automata, L-systems, shape grammars etc, are the primary design tools.” Fasoulaki (2008), broadly defines Performative Design as “! a design paradigm in which the dominant intention is meeting building requirements or else building performances, such as functional, environmental, safety, structural, financial etc.” In Performative Design, a building form is evaluated against performance criteria and modified after it is created using traditional methods.” This chapter will discuss the use of the merging between the generative approach and the performative approach, being the generative-performative paradigm. The possibility of the further development of such a paradigm via the integration of generative performative software with systems such as Generative Components is also discussed.in 4.6.

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4.2 4.2.1

Performative Design Paradigm Introduction The performance of a building has come to contemporary architect’s conscious as a crucial input in the design process and in form exploration and not applied as a function after the form. Architects are realizing that a good building is one that truly functions well in all senses including its performance. The importance of the balance between form and function calls for pre analysis to be performed on a pre-conceived idea. This would not be possible without the use of computational analysis software where a digital model of the preconceived idea is run through different analysis software, even at initial design stages. This highlights the important fact that the results of the analysis at initial stages of a design process will already form a conceptual form of a functional building, at such a crucial stage in the design process, as they will set the limits of certain important parameters. The user specifies the parameters (variables and constraints) then specifies the performance criteria. (Fasoulaki, 2008) “Undoubtedly, the selection of the variables, constraints, and objectives along with the determination of their values modifies not only the desirable performance of a building but also the appearance of it.� (Fasoulaki, 2008) The following are individual examples of such performative, parametric analysis tools that aid the architect in designing and achieving the optimal results possible in a building performance, conscious manner. The parameters involved within each tool are listed in order to understand their functionality in the context of the proposed Integrated Design Process in Chapter 8.

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Parameter/s

Natural Ventilation Wind Energy Photovoltaic Collection Thermal Performance Solar Radiation Visual Impact Shadows and Reflections Day Lighting Shading Design Acoustic Analysis

Name of Software

Autodesk® Ecotect®

Authors

Andrew Marsh

4.2.2

Autodesk® Ecotect® Analysis is a stand-alone, 3-Dimentionsal oriented software that forms part of the Autodesk® chain of products. “Autodesk® Ecotect® Analysis sustainable design analysis software is a comprehensive concept-to-detail sustainable building design tool.” Sofwtare such as Autodesk® Ecotect® Analysis that ties together energy modeling software with Building Information Modeling (BIM) allow for instantaneous energy analysis at the most crucial stages of design. These analysis programs allow for evaluation different Energy Conservation Measures to determine which strategies will have the best results and payback. The tools now available are only in their infancy in terms of the powerful influence they will eventually have on our building design process. Ecotect® performs energy analysis of building models that can improve performance of both existing buildings and new building designs. This analysis is possible via a various amount of possible visual simulations specific to criteria entered by the user. Such analysis therefore considers many potential parameters such as orientation of the building, the wind loads and many others. The weightage of each parameter varies according to the user’s requirements and specifications thus proving extreme flexibility. “Online energy, water, and carbon-emission analysis capabilities integrate with tools that enable you to visualize and simulate a building's performance within the context of its environment.” (Autodesk, 2011) sdfsdf

23


The following figures illustrate the use of Autodesk速 Ecotect速 Analysis in different scenarios where different parameters effecting the building design are being considered. i. Visibility Analysis Autodesk Ecotect can also be used for detailed design analysis (Figure 10).

Figure 10: The visibility analysis displayed here shows the amount and quality of views to the outside mapped over the floor area of an office. (Integrated Design Lab - Bozeman, 2010)

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Figure 11: “Ecotect analyzes and measures lines of sight and visual shadows. This allows a comprehensive understanding of a building’s relations within its neighboring context. This will also help to define solar envelopes and identify acoustic shadows.” (Integrated Design Lab Bozeman, 2010)

ii. Daylight Analysis Figure 12: “Ecotect analyzes and measures lines of sight and visual shadows. This allows a comprehensive understanding of a building’s relations within its neighboring context. This will also help to define solar envelopes and identify acoustic shadows.”(Integrated Design Lab Bozeman, 2010)

25


iii. Shading Device Optimisation

Figure 13: “Shading devices can be tested and optimized for different building orientations. Using accurate solar position data, shading devices can be modified for specific periods of the year or times of the day. (Integrated Design Lab - Bozeman, 2010)

26


iv. Thermal Model Figure 14: “ A detailed thermal model can isolate distinct thermal zones and analyse each in terms of passive gains and losses, temperature profiles, and supplemental load contributions. (Integrated Design Lab - Bozeman, 2010)

27


v. Sky Dome Figure 15: “ Ecotect can create accurate sky dome representations for a given location. Shading masks and vertical sky component symbols can be distributed on the sky dome to help analyze daylight factors and solar access.� (Integrated Design Lab - Bozeman, 2010)

28


vi. Prevailing Winds Figure 16: Climate data such as prevailing winds can also be considered via a weather database.

Other than prevailing winds (Figure 16), other climate data can also be considered such as wind temperature, rainfall and relative humidity. (Thoo, 2007) The advantage of such software is that of its interactive user interface and visual data representation capabilities. Autodesk速 Ecotect速 provides feed back to the user at an early design stage therefore allowing time for certain action and design decisions to be taken. Such feedback is displayed in the form of text-based reports as well as visual displays. This visual data is represented directly on the model of the building under analysis. This involves shadow animations resulting from shadow casting analysis, surface mapped information such as incident solar radiation, and spatial volumetric renderings such as daylight or thermal comfort distribution in a room.

29


The algorithms involved in such digital tools are of a complex nature. The complexity of these algorithms directly relates to the amount of parameters considered during the analysis. Such parametric relationships are implemented and kept within the translation of the subparameters into mathematical data (discussed in Chapter 6). Autodesk® Ecotect® is also used as an important aid tool for architects and engineers in their research. The ease of analysis allows such people to obtain data, faster and at an early stage of design therefore allowing research on hypothetical case studies. The following is an example of a lighting and thermal performance related research where Autodesk® Ecotect® was of aid to provide certain data.

This paper evaluates innovative shading devices and how they can balance a generous degree of control, mastering seasonal natural light with thermal gains in a typical Mediterranean climate such as Malta. The study evaluates the potential success (or failure) of such shading devices, from both their aesthetic and functional perspectives, as part of a passive design strategy adopted by the architect.” Parameters such as environmental design and solar geometry where considered via the architectural science modelling software package, Ecotect© in order to generate experimental simulations. “Moreover a novel computer model termed Solar Control© was developed by the authors in order to assist architects at an early stage during design. (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008, p. Abstract). Three domestic local case studies where run through Ecotect© and analysed. The case studies provided solar control, exploiting different approaches: 1. A traditional structural vaulted roof in a private villa (incorporating light shafts). (Figure 17) 2. A reinterpretation of the Maltese traditional horizontal louvers (persjani) as a façade concept for a development of eight interlocking apartments. (Figure 19,Figure 20,Figure 21) 3. A fragmented innovative concrete shading screen in a seaward housing development. (Figure 18) In the following figures, the method by which the results of the data analysis are represented directly on the model indicating the specific, related areas/parts of the model, should be noted.

30


Figure 17: Summer Insolation within the vaulted villa. (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008)

Figure 18: Lighting Analysis of the apartments clad with a concrete fragmented screen. (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008)

31


Figure 19: A figure of the summer shading analysis. (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008)

Figure 20: A figure of the winter shading analysis. (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008)

32


Figure 21: Lighting Analysis of louvered apartments. (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008)

“As shown in the results of the case studies obtained through computer modelling the façade performance could be very close to what the architect expected without prior digital modelling however deficiencies that could have been avoided occurred.” (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008) This demonstrates the need of computer-aided simulations and their future. The use of Autodesk® Ecotect® has aided the authors to further their research as they developed a real-time assistance package, ‘Solar Control’, providing the possibility to test out various design options with a minimal time consuming methodology.

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4.2.3 Parameter/s

Solar Control

Name of Software

Solar Control©

Authors

Vincent M. Buhagiar, Herman Calleja

Figure 22: A User Screen shot of Solar Control© (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008)

This software was developed following the study on the above three case studies which were run through Autodesk® Ecotect®. The aim of the software is to aid the mature architect or the student in defining the size of the window openings and overhangs in relation

to

sun

orientation.

“A

real-time

assistance package such as the program developed during the study, Solar Control, provides the possibility to test out various design options with a minimal time consuming methodology.” (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008) The user interface (Figure 22) of this software is extremely user friendly where only a few parameters are required from the user to provide

results.

parameters

such

Such as

the

inputs sun

involve geometry

according to the geographical location of the site on which the particular building stands, the particular day and time specified by the user, wall bearing in relation to the north, site elevation above sea level, dimensions of the window opening and of the over hangs, the UValue of the glass and also the inside and outside temperatures. These parameters are related via mathematical geometry. (Also mentioned in Chapter 6). All the mathematical calculation process is available and accessible within a parallel running excel sheet. Similar to Ecotect©, the displayed results in Solar Control© are both visual and numeric (Figure 24). The suggested opening is visualised on a graph where the horizontal and vertical axis represent the dimensions of the opening. Solar Control works out a complex graph representing the shadow pattern and calculates the shaded area in order to produce the values required to run further program equations. The program further calculates the heat transmitted through the glass due to temperature differences, as well as direct and diffused solar radiation (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008).

34


“Using mathematical geometry Solar Control

Figure 23: Instant shadow mask rendering as one adjusts the dimensions and properties of an opening and its respective shading system in Solar Control© (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008)

calculates the angle of incidence of the sun starting from standard declination angle and altitude derivation equations.” (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008) This

software

visualization

as

provides the

user

a

real-time

adjusts

the

parameters until the desired results are obtained by trial and error. Such software is ideal for early design stages. This flexibility is one

of

the

main

advantages

to

the

parametric approach in design processes. (Figure 23) Such a study indicates the need of the application and consideration of various parameters simultaneously. This cannot be done to exact precision manually therefore !

the need of a computerised, integrated system is required.

Figure 24: A User Screen shot of Solar Control© (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008)

Buhagiar & Calleja, (2008) state: Though the mathematical backbone to calculate the solar shading geometry has been developed, the software is still in its pilot stage. The software is to be developed to include vertical and irregular shading devices, openings within a tilting envelope, internal space volume, lux levels, and to handle more complex geometries. The program might be even re-scripted and transposed to parametric design software, such as Bentley© Generative Components© whereas further geometries could be explored through scripting procedures. (2008, p. 6) The authors of Solar Control© state that, “The steps are very well documented within the program making the project an open source package promoting further research and open to new additions.” This makes it easier for such algorithms to be evolved and inputted

as

sub-parametric

relationships

within the aimed Integrated Design Process Tree.

35


As technology in construction are maximisng the options, digital architecture is leading to further geometry. As mentioned previously, an Integrated Design Process will assure the consideration of many parameters therefore it is of utmost importance that the progression during this design stage is simultaneous with the process of solar gain and building energy analysis. Thus the use of parametric software within the field of thermal simulation, solar and lighting control, and various other parameters could be a very powerful link that needs to be explored further. “A successful experiment within the same field has been undertaken by Kaustuv DeBiswas who successfully linked the upcoming mentioned parametric design software, Generative Components©, with Ecotect©.” This will be discussed further in 4.6. Peformative-based software is either used by the consultants of the particular field who then give feedback to the architect or, can directly be used by the architect via the user-friendly tools being developed (as explained in this chapter), whereby constant analysis on the proposed design can be obtained. Developments in such software have made it possible for less experienced building professionals to understand the effect of different buildingparameters and the impacts of certain design decisions. This approach however, lacks efficiency as the conceptual model has to be exported and the analysis is generally run in separate software. Therefore, the integration of the software in which the conceptual model is built and the software the performative analysis is run in would increase efficiency. In fact, the recent breakthrough is that of tying together energy modelling software with Building Information Modelling (BIM). This has allowed for instantaneous parametric-analysis at the most crucial stages of design. These analysis programs allow for evaluating and visualising different situations and scenarios involving the particular parameter to determine which strategies will have the best results and payback. (Gardzelewski LEED AP & Meyer LEED GA) “With an Integrated Design process, energy engineers now contribute more to the building design”. (Gardzelewski LEED AP & Meyer LEED GA). Such an Integration and its effect are discussed further in 4.6.

36


4.4 4.4.1

Generative Design Paradigm Introduction The general approach for modeling a building or an idea is by using known 3D, BIM software packages such as ArchiCAD® by Graphisoft or Autodesk’s Revit®. Therefore in such software it is the user that decides on certain details such as dimensions of doors and windows, radii of the arcs etc. However, when using generative design (computational design), the user does not specify every detail of the design but instead the user defines the design criteria, hence the design parameters (for example, an acceptable range for dimensions, a desirable number of curves with angular deviations by a certain degree). The generative software then generates various combinations of the optimal possible result. The recipe—a mix of scripting and modeling—often produces something unforeseen by the designers themselves.” (Wong, 2010). Therefore, “generative design can be broadly defined as an algorithmic or rule-based process through which various potential design solutions can be created. (Fasoulaki, 2008) Generative Algorithms operate in two ways: as optimization tools and as form-generation tools. In the first way GAs address well-defined building problems, such as structural, mechanical, and thermal and lighting performance. In the second way GAs are used under the scope of the concept of Emergence (Fasoulaki, 2008). This section will discuss generative algorithm based software and how these aid the user in designing a project.

4.4.2

Algorithmic Design tools Grasshopper® This generative software runs in the form of a plugin within Rhinoceros® (Rhino). Rhino consists of a 3D modelling software similar to Autodesk® 3D Studio Max. “Grasshopper® is a graphical algorithm editor tightly integrated with Rhino’s 3-D modelling tools.” (Davidson, 2011). This plugin allows the ability to edit and create parametric algorithms without the need of any knowledge in scripting via the use of ‘components’. These components appear in the form of sockets, which connect, to other components establishing relationships therefore eventually forming an algorithm (Figure 25). These algorithms are also known as “form generators”.

37


Figure 25: This figure illustrates a screenshot of a user- created algorithm in Grasshopper速(right window) running in conjunction within Rhinoceros (background window).

!

The plugin is extremely integrated within Rhino therefore allowing a flexible relationship between the 3D model in Rhino and the algorithm in Grasshopper速. Forms can either be created from the primitive forms within Grasshopper or can be created or imported in Rhino however assigned to components in Grasshopper速. This therefore allows the ability to parametrically control certain parameters directly affecting the 3D model. The advantage of such a 3D model building method is that there is the possibility of controlling almost every point on the model (if algorithmically designed to allow so). Therefore, if changes to the model are required, the user can easily adjust the algorithm within Grasshopper速.

38


Figure 26: This figure illustrates typical objects such as components and parameters available within Grasshopper速 to create a definition (algorithm) (Payne & Issa, 2009, p. 8).

! A Grasshopper definition can consist of many different kinds of objects but the main two are Parameters and Components (Figure 26). Parameters contain data whilst Components contain actions. With reference to Figure 26, the object labelled as A represents a parameter which contains no data, B represents a parameter which contains data, C represents a selected component, D represents a component containing no data, E represents a component containing warnings, F represents a component containing errors whilst G represents a connection between a parameter and a component.

39


The following is an example of a parametric truss modelled in Rhino. This example also highlights several advantages of this algorithmic tool.

Figure 27: This figure illustrates a curved plane, simply modelled in Rhino. (Fano, 2009)

! One component of the truss is modelled parametrically within Grasshopper however displayed in Rhino (Figure 28). The component Is modelled from its basic form, that being coordinates. The rectangle is formed by the joining of four individual points, labelled as ‘Items’ in Grasshopper (Figure 28- left). The algorithm in the Grasshopper window illustrates the creation of two separate triangles by drawing a line between two, diagonal points (coordinates). (Figure 28 – right)

Figure 28: This figure illustrates the truss component (left) being modelled via the algorithm in Grasshopper (right). (Fano, 2009)

!

40


Figure 29: This figure illustrates the finalised truss component (left). (Fano, 2009)

! The offset and fillet of the triangles may be varied via the slider objects within Grasshopper (Figure 30). Figure 30: This figure illustrates the slider object connected to the slider object therefore the ability to control the fillet radius (R). (Fano, 2009)

! An algorithm (Figure 31 - right) is then designed in Grasshopper and assigned to the curved plane surface modelled previously in Rhino. Figure 31: This figure illustrates the algorithm (right) and the divided curved plane surface (left). (Fano, 2009)

!

41


This algorithm divides the surface and allows for the connection between this algorithm and the component algorithm consequently applying the component designed parametrically, to the divided curved surface in Rhino (Figure 32).

Figure 32: This figure illustrates the application of the algorithm (right) onto the divided curved plane surface (left). (Fano, 2009)

! Figure 33 highlights the relationship of integration between Grasshopper and Rhino. Figure 33: This figure (left) illustrates to warping the curved plane surface within Rhino without and the ability of the assigned components to adjust to it. (Fano, 2009)

!

42


By moving the slider to vary the divisions of the curved plane surface, the truss components are multiplied accordingly (Figure 34).

Figure 34: This figure illustrates the increase in segments within the divided plane via the sliders within the algorithm (right) resulting in the multiplied components (left). (Fano, 2009)

!

When change is required to the truss, this is now done efficiently by simple adjusting the values (via the slider components) in the algorithm instantly reflecting the changes in the truss model.

43


Generative Components® Until a few years ago, the main problem with 3D tools such as CAD was that they were there “!to document the design in 3D and to ease the production of 2D drawings but not to enhance or optimise the model. If changes need to be made to the design, then it has to be, at best, partially rebuilt.” (Day, 2007) Generative Components® links the design intent and geometry by which buildings that are freer in form can be designed. This software allows the use of innovative materials and assemblies for eventual fabrication. The geometry-based design approach allows the control of each point on the model therefore allowing extreme control. “Generative Components facilitates this by allowing the quick exploration of a broad range of “what-if” alternatives for even the most complex buildings.” (Bentley Systems, Incorporated). Generative Components® provides the ability to express algorithms that define complex building forms and systems (such as in Grasshopper®). This allows the user to dynamically refine and optimize models with minimal effort. This, after all, is one of the main advantages of adopting a parametric design process when designing a building.

Such refining and

optimization can also be done by “applying rules and capturing relationships among building elements!” (Bentley Systems, Incorporated). Generative Components® literally brings everything together as an Integrated software incorporating “building information modelling, analysis, and simulation software, providing feedback on building materials, assemblies, systems performance, and environmental conditions.” (Bentley Systems, Incorporated). This provides higher possibility of the intent accurately becoming reality whilst great efficiency in both time and cost. (Bentley Systems, Incorporated)

44


Figure 35: This figure illustrates a user-screenshot of a typical modelling scenario. The window on the far right displays the model and all its geometrical points, the central window displays the user defined, design algorithm and the window on the far left displays the transaction file! "#$%!(Harrison, 2007)

45


4.4.3

Generative Form Finding & Optimisation Tool The following is an example of generative optimisation software:

Parameter

Structure

Name of Software

Topostruct

Authors

Panagiotis Michalatos & Sawako Kaijima

Topostruct is a program designed by Panagiotis Michalatos & Sawako Kaijima in order to aid engineering oriented architects at designing their structures. The main aim of the software is to find the best possible shape or distribution of material within an identified space which meets as best as possible certain support conditions and applied loads. This software supports both 2D and 3D structural systems. The software is based on Structural Topology Optimization, which is a modern computational design approach that is used “to find the optimal lay-out of a structure within a specified region.” (Bendsoe & Sigmund, 2004). Although a performative software, Topostruct also utilises the generative approach where variations of the optimum, possible structural patterns are being provided. Other commercial finite element software exists such as Optistruct™ from Altair Engineering. Such programs are compiled from complex algorithms that aim at simultaneously considering all parameters conceivably affecting the proposed structure. When the optimizer is run in Topostruct, this will yield a distribution of material that best meets the inputted conditions by the user.

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The following figures illustrate a brief process of structural optimization of a defined 2D region in Topostruct:

Figure 36: The red square (left) represents a node whilst the blue rectangle (right) represents a load. The blue and red lines represent the stresses within the specified 2D region. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009)

Figure 37: After the nodes and loads are specified, the optimisation process follows which starts to form the best, possible structural form. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009)

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Figure 38: The end of the optimising process results in the best, possible structural form, suiting the given criteria. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009)

The following is a brief process of structural optimization of a defined 3D volume in Topostruct.

Figure 39: After the dimensions of the 3D space were defined, the quantity, dimensions and location of the node/s (red cube) and load/s (blue cube) are specified. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009)

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Figure 40: Optimisation in the process. Structure starts to be visualised as volumetric fog. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009)

Figure 41: Further optimisation. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009)

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Figure 42: Once optimisation is done, a test is run simulating the load (blue cube) at a particular displacement inputted by the user, still visualised as volumetric fog. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009)

Figure 43: The iso-surface can also then be rendered at a particular iso value specified by the user. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009)

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Figure 44: Optimised structure rendered at a lower iso level. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009)

Figure 45: A section of the optimised structure can also be visualised. Such sections display the stress (above) or density maps. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009)

.

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The following figure illustrates other several examples of structural components formed within a 3D given region. It can be noticed that there more than one node can be specified Figure 46 (all of the below): This software is flexible to different scenarios involving different amounts and dimensions of loads and constraints. (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009)

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The user friendliness of this software is a major advantage on other script-based structural optimizers. “The user only needs to inputs the dimensions of the overall volume, the target fraction of material utilization to be reached as well as loads and supports� (Panagiotis & Sawako, sawapan: topostruct, 2008-2009). The structural process is now made to be more intuitive for non-engineers. This design approach has proven to be both time and economically efficient for the architectural firm.

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4.5

Generative Performative Paradigm With reference to sections 4.3 and 4.2, generative design and performative exist separately most of the time. Their combination will therefore allow form finding and optimisation via a generative algorithm based on the performance. Such a combination Includes performance models, simulation techniques and optimization algorithms. Indeed, the designer creates an evolving algorithm, which encodes a generative algorithm and includes performance feedback. This way the computer is used to automatically generate and evaluate possible configurations, and present the designer with optimal or acceptable and approximated solutions for the problem under study. (Fasoulaki, 2008) This design approach constitutes greatly towards the integrated design process, the author is attempting to create. The following is an example of a generative performative software:

4.5.1

Parameter/s

Sun Geometry Weather Conditions

Name of Software

--

Authors

Panagiotis Michalatos & Sawako Kaijima

This software is not available to the public as Panagiotis Michalatos & Sawako Kaijima specifically scripted this for the design of the openings in the atrium roof of the Heritage Vilnius Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects. The openings were designed using inverse illumination. The following set of figures are a set of user screen shots of the atrium model uploaded in the specifically scripted software, to design the openings.

Figure 47: This figure displays the uploaded Rhino model of the atrium of the Heritage Vilniu Museum. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009)

!

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Figure 48: This figure displays the model under orientation-analysis where the user inputs the particular geographical coordinates of the site whilst the month, day and time are varied. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009)

\ ! Figure 49: This figure still displays the model under orientation-analysis. It must be noted that an initial formation of the openings’ skin started to form as a result of the specified orientation. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009)

!

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Figure 50: This figure illustrates the generation process of the rays at various angles as a result of the specified orientations. These rays will eventually define the openings. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009)

!

Figure 51: This figure illustrates the mean and open directions of the rays following the generation process. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009)

!

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Figure 52: This figure illustrates the assigning of the various openings to the surface of the model. The depth of the openings and opening percentage can also be controlled. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009)

!

Figure 53: This figure illustrates the assigned openings, the threshold of which can be controlled parametrically by the user. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009)

!

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Figure 54: This figure illustrates the possibility of rotation of the openings, parametrically (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009)

! This software was developed as a powerful, integrated solar and weather simulative tool. The weather consists of a built-in user-friendly slider according to the month. This will result in a weather simulation appropriate for the site location (geographical coordinates). In this case, the location is that of Vilnius, Lithuania where the Heritage Vilnius building has been designed therefore if the slider is placed on, around the month of January, the appropriate weather conditions will result in snow and wind. This means that it considers more than simply the sun geometry resulting in openings that parametrically and fully reflect the analysed sun and weather parameters. Such a design produces a successful building in relation to the potential parameters affecting the building.

Figure 55: This figure illustrates a specific weather simulation in reaction to the model. The user-interface allows for the weather conditions to vary such as wind direction and speed. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009)

!

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Figure 56: This figure illustrates a wind, weather simulation. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009)

!

Figure 57: This figure illustrates a combined wind and rain, weather simulation. (Panagiotis & Sawako, 2009)

!

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4.6

Integrated Generative Performative Design Approach

The integration between a Generative Performative Design tool and an algorithmic design tool (4.4.2) will allow a further performance-conscious design at conceptual stages of the building mass. An attempt by Kaustuv DeBiswas has formed the integration between an algorithmic design tool and a performative analysis tool whereby an important link between Generative Components® and Autodesk ® Ecotect.proved successful. “A successful experiment within the same field has been undertaken by Kaustuv DeBiswas who successfully linked the upcoming mentioned parametric design software, Generative Components©, with Ecotect©.” (Buhagiar & Calleja, 2008). The Ecotect-GC-link “provides performance analysis of Incident Solar Radiation and Incident Daylight Levels using Ecotect analysis.” (DeBiswas, ecotect - gclink - Project Hosting on Google Code) The aim of the project is to provide dynamic performance analysis in Generative Components. GC talks to Ecotect via a client - server model to do perform calculations. Hence Ecotect needs to be running in the background as a client before any of Ecotect related features are created. (DeBiswas, GC Ecotect Link, 2008) Data analysis in performative analysis software such as Ecotect®, requires poly-based objects rather than geometry therefore in the case of the link between Generative Components® and Ecotect®, the geometrical data must be transformed to such poly-based surfaces. The ECOTECT project is loaded, and the context for the calculations are set-up. In GC terms this effectively means converting the geometric formulae that define the model into tabular format, where each element can be assigned different values for each pass of the analysis. The data is converted into ECOTECT format so that they can be applied to ECOTECT's polygon-based objects, working with the ECOTECT calculator on the model and sending the finished data back to be displayed, or compiled in a report. (CAD USER, 2008) Generative Components® manages to analyse surfaces (form) of free forms of irregular shapes and surfaces. Generative Components® generates surfaces which consequently satisfy a variety of project requirements, including different materials and constraints. This link will allow the application of parameters within the performative algorithms such as Ecotect on the surfaces of the free form shape within the generative algorithm of Generative Components®. This relationship will aid in formulating the realization of the integrated design process where the form is a result of constraints and parameters specified by the user.

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Figure 58: This figure illustrates a user-screenshot of a typical data-inputting scenario within the Ecotect速 feature within Generative Components速. Data includes weather data from Ecotect速 and terrain data.

Figure 59: This figure displays the model of the building being analysed (tower) in selection mode whilst the zoomed up view of the Ecotect parameter in the algorithm (bottom left).

The analysis is then animated until the optimum analysis results projected onto the building mass indicate a positive result. The geometry is translated as the anlaysis is animated (Figures (Figure 60 to Figure 62).

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Figure 60: This figure displays the model of the building under Ecotect® analysis within Generative Components®. This displays the integration of the two, where the analysis data is being mapped onto the geometry of the model within Generative Components®.

This case study pinpoints the importance of the relationship between the geometrical model of the building and the climate analysis. The geometrical model of the building represents the form of the building, which may have been created as result of other parameters (these parameters will be called X for example’s sake) other than climate, whilst the data analysis being displayed on the model represents the climate and orientation parameters. The important factor is that such a relationship is one of equal priority and not a dominated one. The fact that if the form is changed due to the parameters X, the climate parameter is effected in real-time (via the Ecotect® visual analysis) and vice versa. If certain climate analysis results are required, this will directly effect the form of the building therefore effecting the parameters X, displays an equally prioritised relationship where a balance between the two parameters provides the optimum conditions to eventually obtain the optimal building mass.

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Figure 61: This figure displays the model of the building under Ecotect速 analysis as illustrated in Figure 60. However a translation in a point on the model has been made. Whilst this changed the form of the building, the change in colours on the Ecotect速 analysis results (map projected on the building) have also changed indicating the real-time relationship.

Figure 62: This figure continues to illustrate the real-time relationship between the change in form and effected change in analaysis .

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4.7

Conclusion This chapter discussed and highlighted the validity of such tools that can aid the architect for predetermining the performance of each individual parameter (structural, energy, etc). However there is need of a system that consciously and simultaneously informs the architect of real-time performance of all the parameters that conceivably effect the building, as each and every design step is taken during the design process. This applies to the very initial conceptual stages up until the construction of the proposed building. This is the reason for the proposal of an integrated design process as a solution to the problems mentioned in Chapter 1. The generative algorithms existing within the integration of the performative paradigm with the generative design paradigm described in 4.6, may well be imported into the proposed integrated design process discussed in Chapter 8.

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5 5.1

Break-down of Parameters Introduction All conceivable parameters, potentially effecting a project, exist together within a cloud whereby each, interact with eachother in terms of weightage. Figure 63 indicates how each parameter is broken down into their respective sub-parameters consisting of variables and constants existing within their mathematical formulae (explained further in Chapter 6). The breakdown allows the variables to interact and effect other variables of other parameters, within the cloud, however retaining their individual relationships. This break-down is also essential for the translation of the parameters to mathematical data. Examples of such breakdowns are given in 5.2 where the mathematical formulae of each parameter is broken down in order to apply the appropriate required weightage.

Figure 63: Breakdown of each parameter.

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5.2

List of examples of parameters broken down into their respective sub-parameters When broken down, the sub-parameters do not exist independently from eachother but the mathematical relationship between the variables is retained throughout. Further reaserch is intended in order to establish the individual relationships (8.9). The following list also indicates whether the parameter is of hard (H) or soft (S) importance. Hard and soft parameters are discussed further in 8.3.

Parameter/s

Sub-Parameter/s Fire rating

Fire Services (H)

Escape distance ! Thermal Zones Heating Load

HVAC (H)

Cooling Load Building Form Building Fabric Catchment area

Drainage Services (H)

Pipe dimensions ! Boundary Conditions Support Conditions Applied Loads Young’s Modulus

Structural (H)

Poisson Ratio Density Thermal Expansion Yield Strength Declination Angle

Solar Altitude (H)

Latitude Hour Angle Total area of glass surface; Total area of glass under direct sunlight;

Heat transfer (H)

Outside air temperature Inside air temperature. Transmissivity of glass for direct solar

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radiation Transmissivity of glass for diffused solar radiation. Atmospheric transmissivity factor Solar Radiation (H)

Horizontal Shadow Angle Altitude Strongest Winds Coldest Winds Wind Speed

Natural Ventilation (H)

Wind Frequency Area of Vent Openings Leakages dependent of wind speed Leakages independent of wind speed Number of Floors Local Plan

Allowable

Maximum

Internal Height

Building

Thickness of Roof Slab

Height (H)

Height of Basement Gradient in Case of Sloping Topography Sloping sites with frontages on two streets Angle of view

Landscape View(S)

‘Width’ Angle of view

Landmark View(S)

Coordinates of landmark

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6

6.1

Translation of Sub-Parameters Into Mathematical Data/Digital Data

Introduction This chapter will discuss the process involved in converting the parameters such as the ones mentioned in 5.2, from their scientific equations into a form of mathematical data that will correspond with the form of representation adopted in the pre-defined built form. Such conversions are necessary when running generative processes (Chapter 2) in searching for the optimum building volume. Reference will be made to an example of such a process by (De Biswas, 2003). An example of the use of such mathematical data was mentioned in the digital tool developed by Buhagiar & Calleja, (2008) as mentioned in 4.2.3.

6.2

Conversion Process As explained earlier, each parameter consists of a composite of interrelated sub-parameters in the form of mathematical equations. Such equations must first be identified. With reference to the paper by (De Biswas, 2003), Such a Debiswas’ intention was not to accurately

simulate real conditions (like indoor temperature, lux conditions, wind velocity) inside the architectural forms, however, to relatively compare the response of parallel designs in terms of the given criteria. Three parameters were taken in their simplest forms. These consist of the following: Heat Parameter: Heat Gain = Awall x Uwall x (To-Ti) + Awall x Uwall x (I x a)/fo + 13/36xVelwind x Awin x (To-Ti) + !Awin,j x I x § j Light Parameter: Average light leve l=

Lux condition x !nSky x Awin, j x § 2A(1 - R)

Wind Parameter: Air Change Rate =

Vol zone !Awin, j x transmission coeff x Velwind

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It is necessary to define a particular framework for the representation of the data that will firstly define the ‘allowable buildable space’ and eventually the built form. Such a framework depends on the type of ‘space’ that the process is occurring in. The representation adopted by Debiswas is that of a coordinate based system within an x,y,z space.

Figure 64: This figure indicates the parametric framework of the form. (De Biswas, 2003, p. 5)

! The vertices vn, of the volume, are each defined as coordinates xn, yn, zn. The form of the building will therefore be defined in the form of a vector with the variables stated in Figure 65 Searching parameters were applied to each variable based on the optimum objectives (defined in Figure 65)

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Figure 65: This figure indicates the optimum building form (B) in vector form with the indicated variables. (De Biswas, 2003, p. 5)

! Each parametric, mathematical equation is then substituted with the variables (Figure 66,Figure 67,Figure 68) thus converting the parameters to correspond and react within the pre-defined boundary form.

Figure 66: Heat Parameter in terms of the defined variables. (De Biswas, 2003, p. 6)

!

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Figure 67: Wind Parameter in terms of the defined variables. (De Biswas, 2003, p. 7)

! Figure 68: Light Parameter in terms of the defined variables. (De Biswas, 2003, p. 7)

! Once the variables were substituted, a non-dominated sorting process was run using a Genetic Algorithm in which a number of generations of the built form/building volume bearing the pre defined objectives, resulted. The aim of this process is to obtain the optimum pareto set (De Biswas, 2003). Such Genetic processes will be discussed further in 8.5.

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The different generations of optimum building volumes are a result of different combinations of sorting of variables hence the form can also be described in the same form as the predefined framework. Figure 69 visualises one of four thousand generations. The vertices defining the built form are described in the form of xn, yn, zn coordinates as shown in the list, on the right hand side.

Figure 69: One of the optimum building volume obtained as a result of the sorting process. (De Biswas, 2003, p. 10)

!

6.3

Coordinate Based System Such a coordinate based system such as the example referred to in this chapter, allows the possibility of integrating systems such as GIS within the Integrated Process continuously mentioned in this dissertation. Thus the GIS system would contain intelligent data such as MEPA policy guidelines, current building heights of the neighbouring buildings, surrounding landmark or scape views, orientation and weather data etc. In reality, such data exists as parameters. Such parameters can be converted to a coordinate form such as the above example where similar, optimum form finding, generative algorithmic processes can be run. This would therefore adopt a real world x,y,z coordinate based system. For this matter, GIS systems will be discussed further in Chapter 7.

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7 7.1

Geographic Information Systems (G.I.S.) Introduction This chapter will discuss the current and future GIS technology. The aim of this chapter is to also discuss the possibility of the integration of a GIS system in order to function as both the search space for generative, form finding processes to run in whilst provide data of existing constraints on site such as views, surrounding building heights, orientation etc which in turn will act as parameters thus eventually providing to the form finding process in searching for optimum building volumes.

7.2

Geographic Information Systems (G.I.S.) The core of a G.I.S. can be defined, as “a database that efficiently combines value (attribute) information on the objects of interest (e.g., price, square footage, and amenities of a housing unit) with locational and topological (spatial arrangement) information (e.g., street address, latitude and longitude, and census block to which the housing unit belongs).” (Anselin, 1998, pp. 116-117). Such a combination is of a vital tool for providing data when using an integrated design process approach as the aim of this dissertation is to give basis to a design process occurring within a virtual space mimicking the real-world space via spatial data provided by the G.I.S.

7.3

G.I.S. Data

7.3.1

Availability It is important to investigate what type of data is currently available publically. “Typically, governmental agencies maintain base maps of their jurisdiction. The majority of these base maps are limited to two-dimensional (2D) representations, with 3D functionalities being limited to a highly narrow set of applications.” (Hinks, Carr, & Laefer, 2009). The GIS Map Server on the MEPA website can be accessed publicly online. “The GIS server provides mapping data, aerial photography and planning information to all Internet users via an interactive map (Figure 70). It is now possible to search for streets, view aerial photographs, look up planning applications and enforcement actions.” (The Sunday Times , 2002) Albeit this, 3D functionalities are not available to the public and are solely used by MEPA during urban planning and master planning of large scale projects. This involves the testing of various building heights and their effect on the surrounding environment (Figure 72).

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Figure 70: A user shot of the Map Server. (Malta Environment & Planning Authority, 2001)

Figure 71: Terrain modelling of the Qawra/Bugibba case study area showing the extruded buildings as at present. (Conchin, 3D-GIS and Spatial Planning, 2005)

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Figure 72: Terrain modelling of the Qawra/Bugibba case study area, showing the extruded buildings as at present and including a fictitious proposal of a tower development. (Conchin, 3D-GIS and Spatial Planning, 2005)

Figure 70 displays two data maps working together in a superimposed manner. These data maps consist of the Planning Data map laid over the 2004 Orthophoto map. This aids the planner at instantly understanding the boundaries of their site and many other forms of data. Such data provided by these maps are translated into design constraints/design parameters and thus their consideration is extremely important. The data maps that are accessible to public exclude certain important maps that potentially provide essential design constraints such as point to point analysis in order to control the ‘visual impact parameter’ and also lack the possibility to analyse the potential impact of a conceptual building volume of the proposed development on the surrounding buildings. Such analysis tools are solely available to the Mepa planners during urban studies.

7.3.2

Types G.I.S. related data is mainly subdivided into spatial data and non-spatial data. “Any data which are directly or indirectly referenced to a location on the surface of the earth are spatial data.” (Hayton, 2010). It consists of “data that pertains to the space occupied by objects represented conceptually, by points, lines, rectangles. Surfaces volumes etc.” (Tu, 2001). Therefore non-spatial data is data, which has no association to a geographical location.

7.3.3

Obtaining spatial data The acquisition and recording of spatial data is most commonly and efficiently done remotely. This means that the data is recorded without being in direct contact with that object. Such a procedure is defined as remote sensing. Remote sensing images can be obtained at three different altitudes:

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i.

Sensors carried by aircraft

ii. Sensors carried by spaces craft and satellites iii. Very high-altitude, geostationary satellites above the Earth. (Gibson, 2000) Data can also be collected via a Ground-based system (field investigations). “Such systems provide an independent source of data and are important in the identification of features detected by remote sensing means.” (Gibson, 2000). Ground-based systems may be helpful in collecting data on vertical facades such as height above ground of fenestration. Data collection on vertical facades is described further below, under LiDAR Aerial Remote Sensing. The proposal in Chapter 8, will consider aerial LiDAR as the technology used to collect the topographic data. LiDAR Aerial Remote Sensing LiDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) technology is of a short-range remote sensing type where a laser is mounted onto an aircraft. The aircraft then flies over the area required to be scanned. “LiDAR systems may be employed to obtain very accurate topographic measurements and thus allow elevation changes to be monitored” (Gibson, 2000, p. 122). Such a system would be ideal for jurisdictional planning control and enforcement. As explained, elevation changes of natural landscapes are extremely possible to monitor, however remote sensing of a dense, urban landscape is more complex as such an environment is made up of different geometrical characteristics such as building geometry, street geometry and street layout. (Hinks, Carr, & Laefer, 2009). Building geometry describes the shape of individual buildings, street geometry describes the shape of small groups of buildings aligned along a common communication and transportation area while street layout describes the overall geometric structure of the city. (Hinks, Carr, & Laefer, 2009). Obtaining the building geometry data is important as it provides data of the neighboring buildings surrounding the site of the proposed building therefore introducing parameters for the planner/architect to respect. This eventually produces a building volume that respects its surrounding environment. However, LiDAR sensing of vertical surfaces (building facades) tends to create difficulties thus not obtaining maximum detail. “! the laser beam scans a fairly narrow range of angles beneath the scanner— typically not more than 30° away from the vertical on each side” (Hinks, Carr, & Laefer, 2009). Hinks, Carr, & Laefer (2009) have devised a flight planning strategy to overcome these complications whereby they concluded that an appropriate amount of strip overlap, together with a flight path diagonal to the underlying street grid produces a vastly enhanced level of detail on vertical surfaces, beyond what has been previously available. This will add in producing further detailed urban infrastructural models where the greater the detail in data, the better building-design parameters maybe be produced. “Aerial light detection and ranging (LiDAR) offers the potential to auto-generate detailed, three-dimensional (3D) models of the built environment in urban settings.” (Hinks, Carr, & Laefer, 2009) (Figure 73). Such models are needed for a wide range of applications from improved noise and pollution prediction to disaster mitigation modeling and visualization. (Hinks, Carr, & Laefer, 2009).

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Figure 73: Terrain modelling of the Medieval city of Mdina: in this case the building blocks were also included in the visualisation exercise. (Dr. Saviour Formosa, MEPA)

7.4

G.I.S. and 3D Modelling Modelling in conventional GIS is limited to how we express real world objects such as data (data modeling) and ways in which we might transform and analyse that data (data modeling) (eg. Cartographic processing, map algebra). Traditionally, GIS is associated to the local policy controllers whilst 3D visualization tools are associated with the planners. Conchin (2007), emphasises that These processes (GIS and 3D visualization) have long been separate technologies but to be effective in the spatial planning and design environment they need to be closely integrated. A 3D urban model needs an interface for planners and design professionals alike to view and interact with the landscape and built environment. These include terrain data, building footprints, building facades and roofs, roads, pavements, traffic signs, parks, green land and tress. (p.5)

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The visual quality of the built environment is highly valued both for aesthetic and economic considerations. Decisions that modify the built environment have a lasting impact; therefore it is crucial to comprehend the effects of proposed changes before they are case in concrete. (Pullar & Tidey, 2001, as cited in Conchin, Building a Virtual City, 2007). “!much spatial modeling has been (and can be) carried out without a GIS. Increasingly, however, the size and complexity of spatial data sets used in such modeling require the sophisticated data handling capabilities of a GIS.” (see Bailey and Gatrell 1995; Batty and Xie 1994a, 1994b).

7.5

Real-time G.I.S. G.I.S. are not very good in handling time, since layers are predominantly snapshots. Yet we analyse and seek to recognize patterns in the landscape that allow us to hypothesis or deduce the process at work. (Brimicombe A. , 2003, p. 37) “!’standard’ configurations of GIS are sub-optimal for studying processes. The same can be said for studying flows and interactions as these are temporally dependent.” (Brimicombe A. , 2003, p. 37) (Aki, Sota, & Masaaki, 2005) have studied the possibilities of the collaboration of realtime GIS and spatial data where remote sensing imageries were used to to determine the changes in the urban landscape whilst a Real Time Kinetic GPS has been used to determine the position of changed area. This Real-time GIS system is based on remote sensing via high-resolution satellite imageries directly updating a GIS database in real-time via cellular phone. By overlapping HRSI and digital map with GIS, it is possible to find the changed houses at urban area in detail. The changed area is surveyed by using RTK-GPS. RTK- GPS is able to survey absolute position with high accuracy. Simultaneous update of digital map is possible using cellular phone and RTK-GPS. (Aki, Sota, & Masaaki, 2005)

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7.6 7.6.1

G.I.S. and its Integration Integration of computational processes within GIS As described in Chapter 2, several computational processes are replacing traditional processes. Such advancements have produced a paradigm shift in many different areas of science including architecture. As Brimicombe (2003) describes, this has been the increasingly central position of computation – the use of computers having a pivotal role in the form of analysis – as an essential ingredient alongside observation, experimentation and theory.” Brimicombe (2003) highlights the fact that computers have become the environment of our research rather than just the tool. These computing processes are not just occurring within GIS systems where the process occurs in a geo-spatial environment. “Geocomputation can be defined as the use of ‘spatial computation tools as means of solving applied problems’” (Brimicombe & Tsui, 2000). This geocomputation paradigm shift allows new possibilities of the integration of other applications with GIS and vice versa where both share the same data types such as coordinates, points and vectors. “GIS technologies are now intersecting studies in self-organised flows by means of cellular automata (Wagner, 1997); fractal geometry and emerging urban form (Batty & Longley, 1994)”. (Pagliardini, Porta, & Salingaros, 2010). The possibilities of uses for computational processes are various such as in form finding and problem solving resulting in optimum models. The types of models that the architectural planning field is most interested in are those that portray the built environment virtually and how it works, with sufficient precision and an accuracy to allow prediction and confident decision-making. (Brimicombe A. , 2003). As mentioned several times in this dissertation, the importance of the consideration of the surrounding environment is extremely important when planning or taking other important decisions. Such models will therefore help at being sensitive when taking such decisions that potentially have direct or indirect impact on the surrounding environment. Brimicombe A (2003) also mentions that many of these models of interest are used to explain and/or predict what happens somewhere.” Attempts have been made to link these and other models with GIS “in order to have an enhanced management tool.” (Brimicombe A. , 2003) “We use GIS (Geographical Information Systems) technologies beyond their original representational domain, towards predictive and dynamic spatial models.” (Pagliardini, Porta, & Salingaros, 2010)

7.6.2

GIS integrated with other applications GIS technologies are helping areas of different professions and research. “GIS is itself evolving from a set of computer-based technologies for describing spatially-related entities, into a very diverse set of procedures that increasingly have to do with modeling and predicting spatially-related dynamics.” (Pagliardini, Porta, & Salingaros, 2010)

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In the study conducted by (Pagliardini, Porta, & Salingaros, 2010), GIS and it’s development, by use of its ability to allow processes such as cellular automata (Wagner, 1997); fractal geometry and emerging urban form (Batty & Longley, 1994); etc., to occur in an integrated manner, is being used to “develop a much deeper understanding of key factors that rule the emerging spatial order at the structural level of city evolution.” (Pagliardini, Porta, & Salingaros, 2010).

7.6.3

Integration of GIS leads to efficiency “GIS technology illustrates relationships, connections, and patterns that are not necessarily obvious in any one data set, enabling organizations to make better decisions based on all relevant factors. Organizations are able to share, coordinate, and communicate key concepts between departments within an organization or between separate organizations using GIS as the central spatial data infrastructure. GIS technology is also being used to share crucial information across organizational boundaries via the Internet and the emergence of Web Services.” (ESRI® , 2003)

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8 8.1

Proposal for an Integrated Computational Design Process in a G.I.S. Spatial Environment Introduction As discussed throughout this dissertation, the aim is that of the design of an integrated design process as a solution to the ‘loss of Architecture’, caused by imbalanced hierarchical role players’ relationship (as discussed in Chapter 1) and by the lack of consideration of important parameters (as discussed in 0), by reorganising the relationships between the role players in a non-hierarchical manner (further explained in 8.2) and by classifying the important parameters, deemed crucial, as hard parameters (further explained in 8.3). Chapter 4 explores and discusses digital performative analysis tools that aid the architect in constant consideration of these important parameters (hard parameters) individually. Thus, this proposal aims for an integrated process in which such important parameters (hard parameters) are considered constantly and simultaneously with the other hard parameters together and all the other parameters (soft parameters). This simultaneous consideration led to the exploring of search processes by the use of generative algorithms (8.5).

8.2

Role Players The non-hierarchical role player’s relationship avoids abuse and priority between role players where each individual role-payer is considered to be an individual source of a single or many sets of parameters that potentially condition the architecture of the building. Further on, each individual role player is avoided from domination of parameters, and as a result of the direct input (Figure 74). This leads to no prioritization of any parameters by equal weightage unless particular weightages are requested from the client. The role players consist of the: i.

Structural Engineer

ii. Building Services Engineer iii. Quantity Surveyor iv. Contractor v. Sub-Contractor The above list is in no particular hierarchical order. Although, the client and the architect are considered as main role players in a traditional design process, their relationship has been reorganized. This is discussed further in 8.6.

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Figure 74: The sub-parameters, are each, inputted individually into the search process to avoid domination.

Figure 75: The role-players in the deisgn process are the source of the parameters. This figure shows an example of a role player producing one parameter.

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Figure 76: This figure shows an example of a role player with more than one parameter.

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Figure 77: The role of the structural engineer applied to the parameter ‘break down’ shown in Figure 75.

8.2.1

G.I.S.: Spatial Data Environment As discussed in Chapter 7, the GIS provides the design process with important geospatial data. This design process proposes to obtain hard parameters such as solar altitude and natural ventilation directly from known geospatial data, relative to the exact site coordinates (Figure 78). This system also proposes to integrate MEPA planning guidelines within the search space as parameters for the building volume to eventually form. Such guidelines will be geo-referenced and converted to spatial data to cohere with the pre-set coordinate-based 2

framework (8.4). All the parameters integrated within GIS are hard parameters .

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2

Figure 78: GIS spatial input break-down subdivided into its hard parameters and subparameters.

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8.3

Parameters / Sub-Parameters The importance of the consideration of certain important parameters as discussed in 0, led to the classification of these crucial parameters whereby they would always be considered in any project type and weighted equivalently to avoid possibilities for domination. These important parameters were labeled as hard parameters (8.3.1). This called for the subdivision between the hard parameters and the other parameters (lablled as the soft parameters) within the parameter break down of the role players (Figure 79). Naturally, the sub-parameters are automatically subdivided accordingly (Figure 79).

Figure 79: Subdivided into hard and soft parameters and sub-parameters.

8.3.1

Hard Parameters The consideration of the crucial parameters mentioned in 7.5, is important objectively and thus their implementation must become obligatory. Examples of such parameters include: ‘natural ventilation’, ‘solar altitude’ and ‘solar radiation’ (as listed in 5.2). These parameters were grouped under hard parameters. As discussed in Chapter 3, many of these are commonly given minimal or no consideration during a traditional design process. The hard parameters are strictly given equal weightage to ensure non-domination.

8.3.2

Soft Parameters The soft parameters are the parameters subjective to the particular design project. This does not intend to lessen the importance of their consideration however their application is not valid to all design projects. Examples of soft parameters include: ‘view’, ‘social boundary’ etc. The soft parameters are given equal weightage by default but are allowed to vary according to the client’s specific requirements. This will allow subjectivity to each individual project. For example, the view parameter is not always present in all project types.

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8.4

The Design Environment The GIS provides information such as the exact perimeter of the site for the proposed project. This perimeter is extruded to the allowable building height. This extruded volume becomes the allowable, bounded search space for the building volume. Information such as the allowable building height is automatically obtained as a parameter from the GIS system. The sub-parameters are translated into weightage that acts on the Plot Extruded Volume (PEV)(represented as a vector) as explained in Chapter 6. This design process proposes to adopt a world-coordinate based system as the framework for representing the ‘allowable buildable space and eventually, the built form. The building volume will be represented in vector form whereby each vertice represents a set of coordinates in G.I.S. space.

8.5 8.5.1

Sorting Processes The Structure of the Genetic Algorithm “Genetic algorithms (GA) mimic the biological evolutionary process and determine an optimal value in parallel with a multi-point search procedure, based on crossover and mutation in genetics (Goldberg, 1989; Holland, 1992). The first step for the GA application is to define an ‘individual’. Each individual represents a candidate for an optimal solution. Genetic operators, crossover and mutation, are applied to binary strings of individuals. Here, a simple crossover and a binary mutation were performed. Fitness is also defined as an indicator for measuring the individual’s quality for survival. Its concept is similar to that of an objective function in conventional optimization problems. Relatively good individuals with higher fitness reproduce, and relatively bad individuals with lower fitness die during evolution. An individual with maximum fitness means an optimal solution (Holland, 1992). The evolution speed is significantly affected by the degree of diversity of the population. A lower diversity prevents the evolution of the population.” (HASNI, DRAOUI, LATFAOUI, & BOULARD, 2010)

8.5.2

Proposed Process Two individual processes will generate two individual populations, one for the different optimum building volumes and one for different spatial arrangements respectively. A top-down approach is being proposed in generating a non-dominated set of ideal forms of the building volume whilst a bottom-up approach is proposed to determine the different arrangements of the spatial parameters (genetic code) reflecting the brief’s requirements. Each weighted parameter represents an objective that the design process must reach. Since there is more than one parameter for the process to consider, the author proposes to adopt a multi-objective sorting process using a generative algorithm (GA in 8.5.1).

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8.5.3

Top-Down: The building volume This process adopts a multi objective, non-dominated search process using a generative algorithm (8.5.1) where various generations are run by cross over and mutation in order to obtain a pareto set of building forms. These building forms are optimal volumes resulting from the consideration of all the hard parameters only. The generations of this top-down process will yield a finite population, as the parameters are hard.

8.5.4

Bottom-Up: The spatial programme The architect translates the requirements of the brief to spatial relationships (similar to the traditional ‘bubble diagram’). These spatial relationships represent the genetic code whereby different spatial arrangements can be obtained however respecting the predefined genome. These spatial arrangements exist in no context thus literally reflecting the spatial parameters requested by the brief. This process also adopts a multi-objective, non-dominated search process using a generative algorithm (8.5.1).

8.5.5

Top-Down-Bottom-Up Merge The resulting different spatial arrangements resulting from the bottom-up process will individually act as the genotypes (genetic code) as a result of the client’s/brief’s requirements. On the other hand, the different optimal volumes will individually act as environments to host the genotypes. This mutation of the Bottom-up and Top-down will produce new offspring results, during which the spatial arrangements (genotypes) will adapt themselves to the individual optimal volumes (acting as the environments), thus resulting in the phenotype. During the cross over and mutation, the soft parameters (8.3.2), are directly and individually inputted by the role-players (8.2), also now also being considered. As explained in 8.3.2, weightage is equivalent by default however may vary according to subjectivity of the particular project being designed. The interaction of the environment (building volume) with the genome and the soft parameters causes it to also morph within fixed limits (pre defined by the hard parameters) in order to accommodate the genotype. The phenotype and the environment have equal priority, thus no domination. The search processes discussed in this chapter are adapted from De Biswas (2003) and Holland (1995). The author of this dissertation intends to research further, other biological processes and their digital and mathematical adaptation to this process.

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8.6

Client Types The client types were organised into two main types; i.

Client with particular requirements

ii. Client with no particular requirements The client with particular requirements represents a client with a specific brief such as a family requiring a house designed around their particular needs. The client with no particular requirements represents a client having no particular brief but solely the knowledge of the site thus requiring potential possibilities of the site. Such typical clients are contractors who purchase areas of land for development purposes therefore require knowing the optimal ways of maximising the potential of the site.

8.6.1

Client input into the integrated design process The client with particular requirements meets with the architect and his/her requirements are translated into volumes and spatial relationships (‘bubble diagram’). This would become the genotype (8.5) The client with no particular requirements also meets with the architect however only the topdown part of the design process is run whereby a finite number or optimal building forms will result (generatively - 8.5). As discussed in 8.5.3, this process considers all the necessary hard parameters and can also produce a cost estimate based on areas and volumes. Once the potential functions of the building are determined, based on hard parameters (obtained from spatial analysis), the subjectivity of the client prevails whereby the function is chosen. The genotype can now be defined according to the new, known function whereby the bottom up process defined in 8.5.4 can now be run. (show figure – flowchart). The end result of the generative search process is that of a number of equally optimal results whereby the choice is then given to the client. This allows subjectivity to prevail within the system. Figure 80: The over all proposed Integrated Design Process. (Enlarged version found in the Appendix).

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8.7 8.7.1

The Role of the Architect The role in question This dissertation brought about certain elements questioning the role of the architect within a good/functional design process: i.

Is the architect a role player within a design process or a mediator between the client and the design process?

ii. Does the architect actually produce any parameters that have direct influence on the resulting building? This integrated design process does not allow dominance to occur within the roles due to the way they individually input their parameters within the design process. The aim of the design process is that of producing a building resulting from the consistent consideration of necessary hard parameters together with soft parameters for optimizing reasons only. The consequences of an architect directly producing his/her own parameters potentially gives the opportunity for such a person to dominate over the necessary requirements of the building. Typical examples of this dominance are the common aesthetical traits seen between buildings on totally different sites by the same architect.

8.7.2

The roles in the proposed integrated design process: i.

The architect meets with the client and converts the parameters and constraints from the brief into a spatial relationship program. Such a spatial program temporarily exists in ‘space.

ii. The architect also controls which soft parameters are appropriate for the particular design project. iii. The architect filters and controls the cataloguing of the various iterative stages during the computational steps throughout this integrated design process.

8.7.3

Future Role of Architect This process indicates less activity of the Architect within the design process except for the inputs at the beginning part. The implementation of the generative processes are based on pre-reasoned algorithms that mimic evolution in selecting the fittest of the results in order to obtain the optimal building forms and spatial arrangements. This seems to eliminate the direct input of the architect to manually select and filter the results. However the algorithm represents the Architecture in the form of relationships for optimal selection. The future role of the architect seems to be heading to the integration of architecture and digital sorting which causes the marriage of two different skills. This should be looked at in a positive sense by which the architect designs tools that aid him to practice good architecture whereby all parameters, conceivably affecting the architecture of the building are being considered simultaneously.

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The process allows the architect to collaborate with digital morphogenesis as it searches through multi-dimensional problems, something not possible with past methods. This research finds that there is scope to further improve digital morphogenesis through underutilised biological and computer science based methods. The architect remains a critical decision maker in the design process, making digital morphogenesis an evolution of past design methods rather than a paradigm shift. (Davis, 2009) We do not just need better architects and planners: we actually need architects and planners of an entirely different kind, who take the challenge of self-organization in cities seriously enough to investigate new forms of description, prediction, and intervention. (Pagliardini, Porta, & Salingaros, 2010, p. 2) Davis, (2009), interprets this technoogy as an imporvement rather than a replacement: The architect is given importance in This research finds that there is scope to further improve digital morphogenesis through underutilised biological and computer science based methods. The architect remains a critical decision maker in the design process, making digital morphogenesis an evolution of past design methods rather than a paradigm shift. (p.1)

8.8

Conclusion Although there exist various design processes and different methods of approaching a design challenge, this integrated design process does not aim at imposing a school of thought but simply acts as a conscious and constant ‘check-list’, integrally part of the individual or architectural firm. This ‘check-list’ constantly keeps the planner/designer/architect aware of the consideration of the hard parameters. On a collective level, the adoption of this design process will appease and hopefully eventually solve the monotonous current local trend of very similar blocks of apartments. This will occur as the building masses are bound by the specific site constraints (consideration of surrounding environment) whereby no one building will look too similar to others in different localities. On the other hand, the buildings within the same locality, will complement each other as they share similar site-specific constraints thus avoiding contrasting aesthetics within the same area. The computational process aids the architect at doing what the human brain will inefficiently do. That is, the simultaneous consideration of important parameters, efficiently achieving optimal Architecture (pareto set) in less time, as consultation is done ‘in-house’ from conception to end. The removal of the hierarchical relationship provides a healthy design environment where pressure between role players is not allowed and not required due to efficient project completion. It is important for the conversion of the ‘two-dimensional’ policy guidelines to ‘three dimensional’ data in the form of geospatial data to be intergrated within the G.I.S. system. The proposed Integrated Design Process also aims to be adopted for major urban planning within MEPA whereby the constant consideration of important parameters will assure

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functional local plans. The use of generative algorithms would also predict and simulate organic growth within towns and cities thus helping planners in taking correct decisions.

8.9

Further Research The author intends to further develop the proposed Integrated Design Process at postgraduate level with the aim of developing skills in scripting languages in order to realisticaly develop the computational stages within the proposed process. Further research will be dorne to determine the algorithms used to describe the interrelationships between the sub-parameters of each parameter. However, as already mentioned, the algorithms encoded within the integrated generative performative software (4.6) is valid for use within this integrated design process however the logic would need to be adjusted to communicate in a non-isolated manner and also to communicate within a coordinate based, vector modelling approach. The interaction between parameters is a complex analysis, which is to be analysed closely and with the help of the already predefined algorithms used for the integration of the performative paradigm and the generative paradigm. The author also intends to develop the proposed integrated design process further by the introduction of inter-communicative links prior to the top down-bottom up merging stage, whereby premature interaction between the spatial programme and the building volume can occur. The Integrated approach is already implemented within some architectural firms around the world. This does not necessarily mean that these firms have adopted the computational approach however, consider all individual consultants from conception of the project up till its completion. This ‘Manual‘ Integrated approach may prove to be less efficient than the computational approach mainly due to the language barrier between one profession and another. The author intends to research further on the development of a common language whereby all individual consultants/professions can also interact efficiently in an integrated, non-computational environment. Such a common language must then be applied at the core of the profession thus, the course structure at University. Torpiano (2011), discusses the development of such a common language in the context of the University course structure: On the other hand, the possibility of developing a common grammar, or a common language, between the different branches of the profession, was deemed an important characteristic, on the basis of which students would not only make more informed career decisions, and choices, but could also carry with them the ability to discourse with the wide range of “specialists” that are necessary today. (p. 22)

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Appendix

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Parametric Integrated Design Process  

This undergraduate dissertation investigates and challenges the traditional architectural design process as it attempts to solve the core pr...

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