19-0424 Operable Roof Atrium for Air and Daylight

The intent of the Civilized Environment imperative is to advance occupant health by providing a direct connection to the outdoor environment in regularly occupied spaces. We aim to achieve this in the context of our project, which is a retail centre in XXX, Australia, with a full-line supermarket, cinema, childcare centre, and more than forty other tenancies covering a mixture of services, medical centre, fresh food, and dining.

The project proposes a large central public mall area that is sheltered by a "sawtooth" roof - that is large central roof comprising a series of ridges with dual pitches either side. The steeper surfaces are glazed and face South to reduce unwanted overheating and glare whilst enabling natural light deep into the building. We propose that the sawtooth roof will have openable windows, which have the added benefit of reducing thermal energy demands in favourable conditions. In our design, some of the tenancies of the building look into the central mall, others are on the perimeter of the building, and some both face into the central mall and have a perimeter outlook.The sawtooth roof openings will be operated by the landlord (mechanically, with overrides) depending on weather conditions, whilst individual shopfronts (with glazed doors that can be held open) are operated by the tenants.

We have proposed this configuration to reflect the place and its climate (see below), and to provide a welcome and sheltered central gathering place that people can dwell in, which is not specific to any one shop. The building will be a central hub for the surrounding community in a disaster management situation. There may be conditions, e.g. power outages, climate emergencies, and otherwise that mean people will congregate in the mall of the retail centre for refuge.

In terms of the climate, XXX has a temperate oceanic climate and is well known for its changeable weather conditions due to its geographical location - XXXXX. Temperatures range from highs of 46°C (115°F) and hotter, to lows of -2°C (28°F) and colder. Average rainfall is 600mm (24 inches) in a year, though the wettest month on record had rains of 238 mm (9 inches) in a single month.

Through this dialogue post, we would like to confirm our proposed use of a central mall with a sawtooth roof with operable glazing, in lieu of a completely unsheltered open air environment.

See attached images showing plans, sections, and a perspective of the central mall and sawtooth roof from our model.

Yes, use of a central mall with a sawtooth roof with operable glazing, in lieu of a completely unsheltered open air environment, can comply with the requirements of I07 Civilized Environment, if the design of the central mall meets the following requirements:

  • The central mall should open and close, like a flower, in response to temperature and weather. 
  • The central sawtooth glazing must be highly operable and/or permeable. The default position should be open, insofar as security allows. 
  • The central mall should be heavily biophilic and include very substantial amounts of plant life. The project team should be able to make a convincing case that the central mall is an enclosable ‘outdoor’ space. 
  • When the central mall is closed, it should be ventilated by direct outdoor air, as opposed to recirculated air. It is acceptable to use a heat recovery ventilator or similar. 
If all of these requirements are met by the central mall, then the project team's plan to meet the requirements for operable windows for the retail locations facing only the central mall via operable openings (including doors) into the central mall is acceptable. The project team should note that the other Imperative requirements would still also apply, specifically that all regularly occupied spaces have a window wall with minimum 10% glazing onto the exterior or the central mall, and that staffed workstations are located within 30’ of an operable window onto the exterior or the central mall that provides access to daylight and fresh air. Skylights and glazed doors can also satisfy this requirement, provided that they are operable and, with respect to the doors, can be held open for ventilation.
Revised 6/27/19

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