Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Horizontal Densification - Living Quality at a Low Cost

17.01.2005


Courtyard houses and terraced houses are the central topics of a newly released publication on the forms of horizontal densification in domestic architecture. Besides the history of these building types, the various types, quality criteria and their implementation within the purview of the numerous concepts of urban development are dealt with in detail. The book, published in German with the aid of the Austrian Science Fund (FWF), thus offers a unique review of a residential building type that - once again - assumes increasing significance in our society.



Forms of horizontal densification are accommodation units constructed side by side in which rooms that lie on top of each other belong to the same unit of flats. They are also an answer to the increase in uncontrolled development of one-family houses in rural areas and an alternative to vertical forms of densification - e.g. high-rise buildings - in the cities. In his newly published work "Low Rise - High Density. Horizontale Verdichtungsformen im Wohnbau" [Forms of horizontal densification in domestic architecture], Dr. Helmut Schramm of the Vienna University of Technology examines this variform domestic architectural type in detail.

Long Established, but Newly Discovered


Forms of horizontal densification are in their two most well-known types – the courtyard house and the terraced house – not new domestic building types.

The courtyard house, whose living quarter encloses a central open space, already has a 5000-year-old tradition. It originated in India and China and soon spread to large parts of the Middle East and Southern Europe. The origin of the terraced house is significantly more recent. Its first types already existed in the 16th century, but the great breakthrough only came in the 2nd half of the 19th century in the form of factory settlements for workers of large industrial companies.

Stop the Urban Sprawl and Retain the Quality of Life

Both housing types experienced a comeback at the beginning of the 20th century. Helmut Schramm explains the causes: "The rising desire for property, self-realisation, privacy and distance created ever-enlarging residential units that increasingly destroyed the rural space. Therefore, forms of horizontal densification became alternatives for new urban models.

The reason was that solutions were sought which fulfilled the personal requirements and at the same time enabled a densification of the housing unit." But the saving of costs also made this method of construction favourable. It was possible to construct infrastructural facilities such as streets, drainage, electricity and water more concentrated and standardise the components. These forms of construction offered a high quality of life and economic advantages.

In his richly illustrated book, Helmut Schramm depicts the success especially of the terraced house through numerous European examples from the 1920s and 1930s. These include the workers’ settlement Kiefhoek built in Rotterdam, Netherlands, Les Quartiers Modernes Fruges in Pessac, France, planned by Le Corbusier, and the settlements of Törten or Dammerstock built by Walter Gropius in Germany, in Dessau and Karlsruhe respectively, in the same manner as the Werkbund Housing Estate in Vienna, Austria and the Weißenhof Housing Estate in Stuttgart, Germany.

In addition, Helmut Schramm elucidates by means of a comprehensive typology eight fundamental types of the courtyard house and six types of the terraced house. Interestingly, in his book Schramm also dares to determine the quality criteria of settlements and buildings that can be counted among the forms of horizontal densification. Schramm explains: "It is difficult to judge objectively the quality of a building. Not only is it perceived subjectively, but also altered by comprehensive influences. Nonetheless, I have defined such criteria also for better comparability of various types of domestic architecture." These criteria are flexibility and variability, passage, spatial structure, privacy, the integration of garages and low energy concepts.

A chapter on the use of horizontal densification in the framework of urban development concepts and another one on strategy to cope with modern developments, like for instance communication technology, complete the impressive work. With the support of the FWF, Helmut Schramm was able to conclude the findings of his postdoctoral thesis appealingly and to present it to a large audience.

Dr. Helmut Schramm | alfa
Further information:
http://www.fwf.ac.at/en/press/living_quality.html
http://www.wohnbau.tuwien.ac.at

More articles from Architecture and Construction:

nachricht Flexible protection for "smart" building and façade components
30.11.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Silicatforschung ISC

nachricht Healthy living without damp and mold
16.11.2016 | Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft

All articles from Architecture and Construction >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Simple processing technique could cut cost of organic PV and wearable electronics

06.12.2016 | Materials Sciences

3-D printed kidney phantoms aid nuclear medicine dosing calibration

06.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Robot on demand: Mobile machining of aircraft components with high precision

06.12.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>