Qualification - Higher National Diploma in Construction and the Built Environment
Unit Name - Construction Technology
Unit Number - Unit 2
Assignment Title - Construction Substructure and Superstructure
Learning Outcome 1: Discuss the terminology used in construction technology.
Learning Outcome 2: Describe the different techniques used to construct a range of substructures and superstructures, including their function and design selection criteria.
Learning Outcome 3: Identify the different types of civil engineering/infrastructure technology used in support of buildings.
You are working as an Architectural Technician for large design practice, and your employer has asked you to produce a technical report to be distributed to new employees. The document is to consider the functional requirements and design selection criteria for different elements of typical commercial buildings and structures.
Building construction varies largely on the clients' demands and the positive surrounding of the site. Besides the basic criteria for success of a construction project, there are other major considerations that one need to discussed in the pre planning stage. In this paper, some crucial aspects of a building construction requirements have been discussed in the following sections based on three projects that pertain to residential construction, commercial construction, and industrial construction. Before starting with the core functional processes and requirements, the paper starts with the difference among the three types of construction.
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• Describe the differences between residential, commercial and industrial buildings
• Explain how the functional characteristics and design selection criteria are informed by the proposed building use
• Discuss the ways in which sustainability can be promoted in the projects
• Evaluate how the functional characteristics and design selection criteria impact on the eventual design solution of the projects
Differences between Residential, Commercial and Industrial Building
Due to the basic differences in the requirements for living condition, residential, commercial, and industrial buildings have different infrastructural needs. Though industrial buildings often merge with the requirements of commercial buildings, but there are more variety in the commercial domains than industrial one(Biliavsk?, 2017). Differences among these three different kinds of buildings not only confine to infrastructure, but also expand to materials used, cost required, skills and personnel involved, standardizations followed, regulatory compliance, legal procedures and charges, types of equipments etc. Here is an attempt to differentiate the three types of building construction.
Structural Differences: Evident from the types represented, there are significant structural differences especially between residential and commercial buildings as a whole. Residential buildings include areas where people can stay like house, apartments, multi-storey etc. Commercial buildings include all places where built up for commercial purpose. It can be an office, a mall, shop, an educational institution or a hospital and the like. Industrial buildings, also a commercial set up, are different in structure and ambience as raw material processing and production-related operations are carried out in those.
In each of its kind, shapes of the buildings and the rooms or halls, their ceilings, walls, capacity of floor in terms of weight bearing, height of doors, ventilation facilities, cooling equipment accommodation facilities etc are different for their respective purposes. Racks, storage, access facility for differently able persons, average size of different kinds of rooms etc. also vary significantly. For instance, the average measurement of an industrial room or hall is usually bigger than that of other commercial buildings and definitely larger than residences. Size and provision of elevators in multi-storey buildings vary depending on the capacity of the soil and permissibility from the local administration.
Materials: Owing to the variations in building plan and design, the materials used in residential, commercial or industrial buildings vary vastly. In residential construction, the most cost-effective frames are usually used. Timber is considered the best option for such instances. Though today, multi-storey buildings for residence often use steel or other strong metals for foundation structure. On the other hand, commercial and industrial buildings are bound to use strong steel materials for building frame to avoid disasters(Aronson and LaFont, 2020). The longevity and competence of the metals also differ among various commercial and industrial buildings.
Cost of Construction: The cost as well as the sources of investment and their rate of interest and similar financial parameters to determine loss and profit in the task of construction differ largely. Difference in cost for acquiring raw materials, finding a suitable place for constructing different kinds of buildings and even the cost of labour and transport facilities are usually high in case of commercial buildings compared to residential. Industrial construction has less expense only in the place as industrial areas are bought usually in remote and dedicated areas for industry. However, residential constructions are a popular area where banks want to invest generously. Commercial and industrial constructions often depend on other financial resources apart from banks, such as government agencies, independent investors etc.
Apart from the mentioned sections, residential, commercial and industrial constructions also differ in the requirements of equipments and in the deadline for different projects. While residential construction may have easy deadlines in most cases, commercial and industrial construction are subject to strict deadlines.
The different kinds of building construction based on various needs of their use, also reflect essentially on the desired functionality and characteristics that need consideration while executing the projects(Stan and Puranam, 2016). The projects taken up in this case include residential project at Nottingham City centre, Commercial project at Derbyshire and an industrial project at Glasglow. Here is a brief detail on each characteristic requirement for the projects' usability.
Functional Characteristics and Design Goals for Residential Building in Nottingham City Centre
Functional characteristics of a residential building can be addressed as the planning principles that include ten key criteria as discussed below:
Aspect: Aspect also includes the aesthetics of the building. Primarily, the doors, window panels, ventilation spaces and areas through which natural light and wind can circulate are covered under this domain. All these aspects are crucial for a healthy residential complex. Here the directions of the front and back walls of the building are also decided based on the weather and sun's and wind's position.
Prospect: It is the visibility of the different areas of a building from different points. Here, both security of the building and remedy to cover drawbacks in the selected place is considered.
Interior: Usually, the furniture positions and requirements determine the interior planning for the building, though interior design may not be covered under the core construction by the two needs to be in a harmonious proportion (Boone, 2016).
Space economy: Also referred to as roominess, this characteristic criterion considers the best possible utilization of the available space in a room or in the whole building. Room shape, size, furniture placement and even the position of the doors and windows are involved in this regard.
Positioning: It refers to convenient grouping of rooms in the building considering procimity.
Circulation: It is about the ease of movement allowed for the residents or visitors in the building(Stan and Puranam, 2016). The vertical and horizontal circulation refer to same floor movement and up-down movement in a building respectively.
Privacy: A residential building needs internal and external privacy. So, the design blueprint must take care of privacy and security provision from external and internal intrusion. Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) may be followed for the purpose.
Ventilation: Ventilation is important for both emergency and usual living condition.
Sanitation: Finally Yet Importantly, sanitation is a major concern in residential building as improper sanitation may spread disease and cause huge discomfort for the residents.
Characteristics of a Commercial Building at Derbyshire
The requirements and functional characteristics for commercial buildings are vastly different than residential ones yet they share some common characteristics like private areas, ventilation, movement, security requirements, sanitation, energy efficiency etc. Most common differences between commercial and residential buildings are found in the laws and regulations they need to adhere to. Naturally, the residential constructions have less strict and minute laws than commercial constructions. A few aspects can be discussed in details here.
Energy Efficiency: It is one of the greatest concerns for commercial buildings. In present times, it is referred as building envelope that includes elements like thermal performance, building orientation, air and moisture permeability and day lighting(Brusoni and Vaccaro, 2016). The same aspect also includes the additional considerations of illumination, window, glass sections etc. Aperture areas, fins, light shelves or horizontal surface for light reflection and transmission, overhangs are also common features in commercial buildings.
Mechanisms: Mechanical system leading to comfort and aesthetics of a commercial building include pre-determined degree of comfort and necessary ventilation. Heating, Ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) fall under these characteristics and are determined differently for different zones like single or multiple zones(Chen,2015). Size distribution of the rooms and buildings, exterior wall, roofing, insulation, and windows have different requirements for such construction projects. Modern projects focus on variable air volume for weather conditioning.
Lighting: Lighting is a major characteristic feature in commercial buildings. Energy efficient light is the key concern, there are different requirements for lighting for different areas. Rom surface brightness, glare-adjustment, task illumination, colours, aesthetics, and control are necessary. Electronic ballasts, tubular fluorescent lamps are used in modern structures.
Operational Equipments: Adoption of information technology has changed equipments commonly used in commercial buildings. Plug loads in a building need to be adjusted energy-efficiently.
Structure for industrial building at Glasglow
Most of the industrial building's characteristics revolve around size, height, and load-bearing capacity. Here are some specific details.
Foundation: There are three basic kinds of foundations - plane, deep and machine base. For plane foundation, compacted soil, stone, brick etc. are used. For Deep one, wood, steel concrete are adopted. Machine base depends on brick and other concrete(Chatfieldand Griffon, 2016).
Insulation: Wall and base insulation against moisture is necessary. Lubricated bitumen, Kent bitumen, tar, asphalt etc are used for this purpose.
Load carrying structures: There can be vertical and horizontal load-carrying structures. For vertical, there can be load carrying walls and pillars or columns made of brick, stone, wood etc. Horizontal structure includes Stairs, Timber or brick floor, Monolithic floor etc. made of steel beams, stone, wood, and similar materials.
Apart from the discussed ones, skeleton, roof structure, facades, doors and windows, surface and partition walls also need different consideration than residence or commercial buildings.
Sustainability in building design involves a number of considerations including economic sustainability, environmental sustainability and threat prevention. The key concepts regarding environmental sustainability revolves largely around energy efficiency and carbon footprint reduction. Decisions in this regard can be made after taking an environmental impact assessment. Adherence to environmental policies, sustainability vision and goals is crucial for building constructions on respective areas. Local legislations play an important role in deciding the sustainable approached while constructing. Policy, accreditation, and frameworks for environmental sustainability need to be practiced and acquired by the project holders in all the varieties. The practical attempts of sustainable building construction start from business planning. Starting from selection of personnel, monitoring, reporting, recording, and analysing, sustainable construction can be achieved by concentrating on energy-efficiency, waste management, flexibility, durability, natural resource management, design for anti-pollution, noise-free ecologically cooperative and resilient operations.
Some benefits of sustainable construction include resource utilization or maximization of resources, minimization of consumption, recyclability, environmental protection, healthy toxicity-free environment, quality assurance for both durability and eco-friendliness. These very benefits indicate the functional requirements such as conservation or resources, reusing recyclable resource, renewing possible resources, ensuring least carbon footprint by energy-efficient and responsible planning, using environmentally friendly structures and materials to avoid toxicity, and following standards to maintain quality of construction in terms of durability and disaster-resilience(Dent,2020). Modern technologies help in a sustainable HVAC system and insulated building. Passive solar building, insulated windows, using solar panels, wind turbines, solar water heating are some basic measures to attain sustainability. Use of Lower Volatile Organic Compounds like recycled denim or cellulose insulation helps in reducing toxicity emitted in nature. Materials used in a construction must adhere to sustainability standards. Location of buildings also add to sustainability as different constructions suit in different areas. Principle of Intelligent Urbanism is a concerned field in site selection for sustainable development. Building Information Modelling (BIM) is a sustainability strategy for constructions.
Common selection methods for constructional designs include Low-bid selection, Best-value selection, and qualification-based selection. While Low Bid selection concerns about the project cost, best-value emphasises on optimization of cost and benefits. Qualification-based selection is all about the contractors' capacity and experience. However, the building characteristics for different kinds of constructions help in understanding which section is needed the most for a building(Fattahet al., 2017). For residential buildings, the low-bid selection can seem applicable but for commercial buildings the best-value or qualification-based selection hold more merits. Industrial constructions need a detailed analysis on the qualification of the builder and their authentication in terms of claims and capabilities. However, specific designs help evaluating the requirements for the buildings that differ in each case of projects. For instance, the residential projects need focus on general hygiene and sustainability whereas commercial buildings need more emphasis on lighting, structure, security, and privacy.
Industrial building is more about the basic structural differences including the key infrastructural measurements and load-bearing capacities of floors, shape of the roof and movement facilities for both load and working personnel. Schematic design is most directly aided by the characteristics as it includes pattern, size, material, colours, textures etc. Design Development is also impacted by characteristic requirements such as sanitation, mechanical operations, engineering requirements etc. These characteristics further aid in preparing contract documents and taking up the projects from the clients under an agreeable condition. Characteristic requirements also directly influence procurement or purchase order for the construction(Graubner and Pohl, 2017). However, even among the same kinds of constructions, there are different requirements based on the client's desired structures and functions. Understanding the basic construction requirements along with technological solutions, public safety, customer services, human resource requirements, statistical calculation, leadership and communication can be easily achieved by analyzing the characteristic requirements of the buildings.
• Soil preparation.
• Adequate resources.
• Access availability of labour and finance.
• Special requirements by the clients.
• Size and type of construction.
• Load-bearing requirements.
• General functionalities required.
• Compliance to policies and rules.
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• Describe the pre-design studies carried out and types of information collected for the construction site projects
• Describe techniques used for remediating the site prior to construction commencing
• Describe the types of substructure works carried out by civil engineers
• Explain the functional characteristics and design criteria for primary and secondary elements of a building substructure and superstructure (choose one of the projects)
• Compare different types of structural frame used to carry the primary and secondary elements of the superstructure
• illustrate how the component parts of an element allow it to fulfil its function
Pre design Studies
Pre-design studies and information collected for the projects cover a vast area of constructional measurements and project feasibility. Diagram preparation, brief development, feasibility, technical design, procurement is some of the pre-design considerations. All these were carried out in accordance to the clients' requirement in the three projects (Abdelouhabet al., 2016). Here is a division and explanation on each pre-design task.
Business Justification: It was the first stage in the pre-design phase. The need of the business has been attempted to define and identify within the scope of the projects' deliverables. This study required a number of considerations including the intention, the business client, the area selected for business for commercial building, the environmental regulation for sustainability in each of the project, especially for the industrial one at Glasglow and connectivity related queries have been attempted to solve.
Preliminary Development: A brief preliminary development document for the projects were prepared for each case. It was followed by preparation of the project needs, strategic brief, and project brief. In the strategic brief, information about the project and related issues were collected with the help of the information provided by the clients. In the project brief, the strategic brief was used to develop the basic project plan including the details of material and human resource procurement.
Studying Feasibility: It was one of the most crucial stage where viability of the project was analyzed, options were considered, permissions from various local and national agencies were taken, budget preparation was chalked out and various assessment were carried out (Kashidand Kolhe, 2018). Site appraisal, geotechnical measurements, functional and maintenance issue evaluation, environmental impact assessment, statutory approval, procurement options, understanding, restriction, accommodation, environmental impact etc. were also parts of this phase.
Concept design: Schema design or concept design has two stages that help getting a probability view of the main design before commencing it. It has concept and design as two different parts of the same stage that help understanding the design and technical requirements including personnel more clearly.
Design Development: More about defining the design, design development is also a pre-design phase that collects information about the layout, landscape, dimensional requirements, policies, schedules, accommodation, data sheets etc.
Procurement: It was the most complicated and vast phase of information collection and preparation for the projects. In this phase, contracts of the administrative, local, and regional stakeholders were traced and documented. Agreements on frameworks were made and tenders were called(Walkeret al., 2020). Partnership, management and personnel contracts and collaboration were also part of this stage. Speed, cost, quality, potential barriers, asset ownership, financing and related issues were discussed.
Hand Over: After gathering the mentioned information, the projects were distributed among the concerned groups and agreements were made on their demand and competence. It also worked as the Defect Liability period in the project.
Site remediation has been carried out by Excavation and Disposal technique for the industrial construction. This technique helped in understanding the soil type, particle size, contaminant depth, availability of the operating space, access, services, and utilities. In the process, the possible contamination levels expected from the construction and its future usability has been analyzed.
For the residential construction, Monitored Natural Attenuation was adopted for remediation. In order to reduce the load, concentration, toxicity, and flux in the soil due to pollutants, the MNA is a popular approach. Advection, Dispersion, Sorption, Degradation, Volatilisation are some major techniques utilized in MNA. It helped in gauging groundwater velocity, porosity, permeability, temperature, and Ph-level. Hydro geological system calculation was carried out modelling(Koh and Kraniotis, 2020). This practice aided in preparation of contingency measures.
For the commercial Project, Soil Washing was adopted for remediation. It is a mixed approach with physical and chemical activities. In the process, surfactants, acids, alkalis, complexing agents have been applied.
However, Bioremediation was also taken into consideration in commercial and residential project. This process helped in naturally remediating the sites and finding out the chemical and pollutants in the soil along with understanding its tolerance level for residential and commercial waste.
Sub-Structural work by Civil Engineers
Civil engineers responsible for structural works are ones who determine the basic structures of the constructions after carefully observing the pre-project information details. A major task that structural engineers need to carry out, is integration among different parts of the project. Enabling optimized resource utilization and ensuring sustainability also fall under the Civil Engineer's functional domains. Substructure work by civil engineers include foundations, retaining walls, precast concrete sheeting, piers, bearings, foundation protection and Improving draining. In the mentioned projects, the following tasks have been carried out by the civil engineer.
Building Design Preparation and Foundation: The Civil Engineers in the three different projects have calculated the load-bearing capacities of the sites and the required building structures and then they calculated whether the two commensurate with the purpose.
Weather-reaction calculation or Wall retention/Protection: the civil engineers used computerized applications to test and evaluate the possible tolerance of the buildings to weathering and the geographical characteristics of the area(Walkeret al., 2020). This practice helped in understanding the material and structural requirements of the buildings further.
Obtaining Legal and Statutory Permits: Getting permission for carrying out the projects without hazard, the civil engineers needed to submit their report about the structural characteristics and the internal or external building requirements.
Material Selection and Cost Estimation: The civil engineers are also responsible for estimating the potential expenses of the projects and selection of materials to be best fit for each of those.
Supervision: Supervising the execution of the plan with necessary compliance is also the civil engineer's role in the construction projects. Every detailed measureisevaluating and changes are made if discrepancies found under the supervision of the engineers.
Communication: The civil engineer being the responsible authority in the construction site, communication, and collaboration with all the project personnel is also a basic task expected from them. Though it does not hold any direct structural function, but help in executing the plan adequately.
Apart from the mentioned areas, project management and contract administration are also the civil engineer's duty in the construction projects.
Primary element of Superstructure
The primary elements of building super structure include roof, external walls, galleries, partitions, beam, framing members, upper floors, stairs and ramps, internal walls.
The secondary elements include borrowed lights and hatches, windows, cavity floors, doors and door frames, floating floors, suspended ceilings, balustrade, roof lights etc. here is a detailed elaborations on the same.
Walls: Walls can be external and internal. In external, outer leaf, insulation, inner leaf hold importance for structure. In internal, sheet material, inner skin, breathable membrane, cavity, outer skin holds importance.
Floors: Floors can be ground, floating, solid concrete, suspended timber floor and many other kinds. Insulation, decking, ground lats hold importance for flooring(Mooreet al., 2015).
However, solid block walls, solid brick walls, timber stud walls and metal stud walls are common types of walls built in a super structure. For the residential project, solid brick wall and timber stud wall have been used.
Sub structural Elements
Narrow strip foundation, damp proof membrane, cavity fill, concrete ground floor slab, insulation, steel reinforcement bars, etc are primary elements of substructure. Substructure being aimed at receiving the load from the main or superstructure, needs damp proof course (DPC). The key stage of the substructure is foundation at the planning stage of the construction. Hence, the substructure determines the longevity and sustainability of the building. Here domestic dwelling structure for the residential project has been considered. So, narrow strip foundation was used. In case of industrial project, pad foundation has been applied.
Different types of structural Frames
For the superstructure of the residential building, simple wall, floor, roofs, and stairs have been considered. Load-bearing framework, main floor and roof beams, ties, and roof tissues are some intense areas in superstructural frames. However, in the residential projects, Steel and wood frames have been used. Here is a brief description of their uniqueness and efficacy.
Resistance: Steel frames are known for resistance to both environmental and man-made disasters including pests and termites. Fire, natural calamities etc can also be more efficiently dealt with the steel framework.
Environmental Sustainability: Unlike steels, wood is more environmentally sustainable. However, steel has longer lifecycle than wood(Mooreet al., 2015). Again, wood is easier to collect but procurement of timber from forests itself goes against the interest of environmental sustainability. Yet, for small residential projects, timber is used as a popular material for frames.
Cost-effectiveness: Due to the same reason of availability and less production requirements, wood is cost-effective than steel or other metals. If life-cycle is considered, steel ensures more profitability than wood.
Time and aesthetics: Faster construction is possible with steel. Faster execution of the project naturally reduces the overall cost and investment in it, increasing profit margin. Steel frames also offer various aesthetic options.
Versatility: Metals can be moulded into desired shape without compromising quality, but in case of wood, changing appearance and shape may result in compromised functionality and durability.Considering the above criteria of comparison, the residential project needs to be done mostly by using steel frame.
Function of components
The components parts of a building allow it to ensure sustainability and resilience. The components further satisfy the need for the building objectives. This is how functionality is assured by the components. The components also determine the load-resistance or stability of the construction. Durability is undoubtedly assured by the right component for the right project. Selection of the suitable resource determines resource-utilization. Here are specific instances on how components help in building structure.
Foundations: The foundation framework, or frame component needs to be carefully chosen after evaluation of the required performance in each case of residential, commercial, and industrial projects(Mooreet al., 2015). Steel frame is often considered as the most useful component for foundation.
Stability: Structural stability includes a number of considerations including soil pressure, depth measurement and load bearing. It is important to adopt the suitable component for the structural stability.
Durability: Like Foundation and stability, durability is subject to compressive forces. It needs to consider the functions of the superstructure and substructure equally including wall, floor, roof, foundation etc.
Besides pressure, atmospheric conditions and natural calamities, resistance from fire is also a basic requirement from components used in construction. The component of an element determines its functionality, durability, capacity of carrying out desired performances. GAF, Grabber, Meadow Burke, Stego, Aco etc. are popular manufacturer of useful building materials for any kinds of projects.
• Materials and products match.
• Site correction.
• Plans and specifications followed.
• Resource availability.
• Correct site remediation.
• Super structure and measurements.
The projects taken up by the company require a detailed analysis of the pre-construction criteria and details as attempted to be elaborated in the body of the task. The different locations, being favourable for the respective projects, it was not very hard for site remediation and access to resources. However, there is no certain common aspects of a building construction and mostly the clients' preference needs to be considered as the ultimate goal. Sustainability, resilience, and hygiene are common to any type of the construction project requirements.