Sustainability in Architecture
This thesis embraces the “Sustainability” concept in the construction industry being the logical outcome the development of this industry that faces environmental, social and economical challenges, which enterprises have to consider in the beginning of this century. This thesis aims at demystifying the “Sustainable Construction” concept. Due to bad examples in the past, that hopefully will not be repeated in the present and future, this concept became almost irremediably associated to construction, in which the prime objective was reducing environmental impact leaving important parameters, like quality, durability and cost behind. This concept has lost and continues to loose credibility due to constant marketing manoeuvres by companies in this sector, that deceivingly associate this concept to their products, in order to, in a fiercely manner, maximise sales and profit.The construction industry is one of the most important economical sectors. Nevertheless, this sector continues to base itself on traditional construction systems and unqualified workers, being characterised by excessive usage of natural and energetic resources. This situation causes great environmental impact with great potentialities to be reduced.This thesis identifies, in general, the environmental impacts in the construction industry, and particularly, in the building sector.A few measures and examples of new construction technologies and others are also presented, that are the result of technological renewal and improvement of building technologies, some of them, already applied thousands of years ago.The development and application of these technologies aim at a construction, more and more sustainable, that settles evenly on environmental, economical and social domains.A methodology, that is expected to be adequate to validate the sustainability of construction solutions, is presented at the end. This methodology is then applied to some conventional and non-conventional solutions of pavements and exterior walls. It is hoped that the practices approached, the methodology developed and the results obtained, may serve as a basis for the various construction intervenients, in the decision making process, in accomplishing buildings more sustainable.
Although statistics suggested that highrise buildings have a lower risk of fire per unit floor area , highrise buildings account for a very large share of people and property exposed, especially for the large number of super highrise buildings currently constructing in Asia and Middle East. The definition of super highrise building changes as construction technology and human perception advanced. The highrise building with height more than 23m. This is the maximum elevation resulted from the less favorable rescue and fire fighting operations with the use of extendable ladders. Since highrise buildings are unique with regard to their elevated height from conventional lower buildings, different design considerations including additional features are required for fire safety. Prescriptive codes in a number of countries (3, 4) have separate section to cater for highrise building fire safety design. The additional enhancements in the prescriptive codes include suppression system, detection and alarm, but do not include the egress component.
FIRE SAFETY CHALLENGES TO HIGHRISE BUILDINGS
The fire safety in highrise buildings has raised special attention by the general public and authorities. The special report on the operation considerations for highrise firefighting.The special fire safety issues related to highrise buildings can be summarized into six major areas: fire department accessibility, egress and people movement, natural forces, increase in occupant and fire load, combination of occupancies, and arrangement of internal utility services.Among the above fire safety challenges, half of them are directly or indirectly related to the evacuation of building occupants (extended vertical travel distance, high occupant number and different occupant types). Therefore the challenges of highrise building evacuation will be discussed in detail.