Page 95 - Rural Housing Association Design Guide
P. 95
Design guide for social housing in rural Northern Ireland Creating rural places: Designing appropriate buildings Dwelling type: configuration and number of storeys Scale and proportion In terms of rural vernacular forms, semi-detached two storey types were rare with detached buildings more common. Dwellings should be scaled appropriate to their setting. Large buildings require more space around them, whereas the “Clachans” often were of single storey detached buildings. “Farm complexes” typically had “the detached farmhouse” relationship of small buildings and their surroundings can be more compact. They can be positioned closer to the road surrounded with single storey outhouses. Therefore a development of exclusively semi-detached two storey dwellings and have less dominant landscaping features. characteristic of the past generations of rural social housing provision does not sit well within the rural setting. Intelligent design and layout in rural social housing schemes, however, may create opportunities for some “attached” dwelling With regards to the built elements of a dwelling, good scale and proportion are both necessary. Key to this are: types with a range of heights which are not suburban in appearance or nature. • narrow plan types with shallow gables; • high solid to void ratios; • building heights relative to openings (vertical emphasis); Semi-detached dwellings. • minimising the distance between ground and first floor windows; and • simple symmetry or rhythm of architectural features. Detached dwellings. Good scale and proportion contribute to a scheme’s ability to create a place where a human is not dominated by the built environment around them. Mature landscaped setting helps to Built features appropriately scaled to the mass of the “absorb” scale of new buildings. building. Symmetry can be appropriate. One & a half & Single storey. full two storey. A notional scheme at Moneydig, Co.L’Derry, demonstrating the attractiveness of using a range of dwelling types, including semi-detached, detached, single, storey and a half and two storey configurations. At settlements, particularly village cores, the two storey semi-detached or terraced form is often more common and the added height contributes effectively to the enclosure of space and can give structure to more formal places. Single storey, detached dwelling construction can be more expensive than two storey “attached”, however the single room depth form of this type of house is more common and typical within our rural environments. The range of single storey Minimise distances to create detached forms achievable within the parameter of social housing area bands, adds particular interest to new build a smaller scaled building. schemes outside the settlement core. There is an underlying issue of available and affordable sites within smaller settle- ments and dispersed rural communities which can lead to poorly designed schemes with an inappropriate high density of development. Layouts in these places should generally not be as dense as those within villages, resulting in a place for “Country cottages” at a notional scheme at Tynan, Co.Armagh, demonstrating the attributes of good proportions the single storey detached typology. Occasionally, 3 storey dwellings may work at higher density locations within village and designing to a human scale. cores. 94 95
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