Prospects for improvement in the design of residential buildings in Jeddah integrating passive ventilation systems and enhanced family interaction

Krimly, Salah (2020) Prospects for improvement in the design of residential buildings in Jeddah integrating passive ventilation systems and enhanced family interaction. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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Background: This thesis proposes that in order to provide house residents with an environmentally, socially, and culturally sustainable dwelling, three key factors must be considered together: the architectural design, the family social life within the house and the environmental technologies and systems employed to maintain thermal comfort. Currently, the majority of the existing literature focuses on linking only two of these three research areas, therefore there is a lack of existing research linking these three areas.

Since the economic boom in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in the 1970s, subsequent decades have seen many innovations in the design of housing types in Jeddah, and other Arab cities. These have included so-called ‘modern style’ apartments and villas, while traditional house types have come to be seen as obsolete and unpopular. In line with these changes, air conditioning has been developed and widely adopted in residential buildings. As a result, the layout and spatial organisation of residential units have radically changed. Traditional passive ventilation features – such as the courtyard, windcatcher and others – have disappeared and so have the social spaces associated with them. Family members have therefore become isolated within their separate living areas and this has had a negative impact on the quality of social interaction within the family dwelling.

Aim: The aim of the thesis is to explore the prospects for improving the design of residential building by reintroducing some traditional passive environmental systems. It is based on the proposition that the use of these traditional environmental systems would allow a more family-oriented spatial organization, therefore improving both the social aspects of living in the house and enhancing its energy performance.

Method: the research follows a mixed method approached that includes three phases. Firstly, an observation of Jeddah building typology. Data for the second phase were collected through 302 questionnaires which subjected to descriptive statistic for frequencies and Chi-square statistical test. The third phase included 23 semi-structured interviews where the data were thematically analysed. In both phases the data collected (questionnaires and interviews) counted as a dwelling. This research design allowed the researcher to highlight the changes that have happened in Jeddah residential buildings over time and after the introduction of air conditioning. Additionally, to collect and analyse house residents’ views regarding the potential for revised spatial layouts (incorporating passive ventilation systems inspired by traditional Jeddah houses) to lead to better family social interaction, as well as lower energy consumption.

Finding: The research main finding is that changing to passive ventilating systems could affect spatial organisation which may in turn effect social interaction. Data revealed that most Jeddah house residents would accept the use of traditional passive ventilation elements designed in a contemporary way. The finding also suggested that these design alternatives could result in lower residential energy consumption – helping to reach the Saudi Vision 2030 – at the same time as providing dwellings that are more culturally and socially satisfying for Jeddah house residents to inhabit.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (PhD)
Supervisors: Hale, Jonathan
Subjects: T Technology > TH Building construction
Faculties/Schools: UK Campuses > Faculty of Engineering > Built Environment
Item ID: 63788
Depositing User: Krimly, Salah
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2021 11:50
Last Modified: 15 Jan 2021 11:50

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