Page 53 - Rural Housing Association Design Guide
P. 53
Design guide for social housing in rural Northern Ireland Creating rural places: Considering site characteristics Shelter 2 There is not only considerable merit in designing shel- tered, sunny, private external space for outdoor activity such as children’s play, gardening or simply sitting in the sun, but also of availing of a more sheltered location and siting to reduce the adverse effects of wind chill, contributing to reduced heating costs for the dwelling itself. There is much to be learnt from previous genera- tions, who availed of topographical hollows, built in the lee of hills, planted hedgerows and, on a grander scale, built walled gardens; all to create and reinforce the attributes of a pleasant micro climate. 1 PLACEMENT OF BUILDINGS Site buildings with an aim of achieving sheltered pocket spaces. Clever placement of outbuildings can protect rear gardens from 1 harsh winds. 2 LANDSCAPING ACTS AS A WINDBREAK Wind speed will be reduced for distances up to 20 times the height of the shelter on the downwind side. 3 New tree and shrub planting both create shelter and enhance existing shelter. 3 SEMI-PERMEABLE SCREENS These can reduce wind speeds, i.e. post & wire fencing with planting. A notional scheme at Mill Bay, Islandmagee, Co. Antrim, demonstrating design features and principles used to build upon the natural shelter at this windy coastal location. 52 53
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