Environmental site planning
This chapter considers the implications of a warmer climate on site planning and discusses flood risk. Usually, the more compact a city, the more environmentally sustainable it is. People will be driven away from high-density urban areas if they lack spacious, high-quality dwellings; a healthy environment and open spaces. Because of the dense congregation of buildings, people and activities, urban areas have a different local climate from the surrounding countryside. Working with the wind is crucial for successful urban environments. Taking advantage of passive solar gain reduces a building’s energy consumption. Reduced solar gain can be offset by higher fabric energy efficiency standards. In well-insulated buildings, solar gain can provide 10–20% of yearly space heating demand. Land use on the north-south street axis is ideally suited to commercial or other facilities which do not require solar gain. Many design and local authority guidelines recommend that single-aspect units should face south or south-west.