Detmold, 10. Juli 2017 14:22 Alter: 2 Jahr/e

Interacting with the facade: Lessons from everyday life in office buildings

The latest efnMOBILE Workshop 2017 in Delft centred around the general topic of user interaction with the building envelope, focusing on selected aspects of façade design and operation from users' perspective. Commonly, architects and façade designers are present during design and construction stages of the façade development process, without mayor involvement during the operation phase. Hence, they usually miss the chance to evaluate how their designs perform in reality, preventing the use of valuable feedback for future projects.

Therefore, the workshop sought to position students in the operation phase of building envelopes, learning from the daily experience of users from real office buildings from TU Delft campus. Office buildings consider extra challenges compared to residential buildings, due to the higher technical complexity of façade systems and unclear user profiles, which results on a need for standardisation that not always matches users' comfort and control needs. The workshop was structured around the assessment of real office buildings, focusing on three key aspects to promote a discussion about the role of the building façade during the operation phase, and the identification of existing possibilities for user interaction: comfort, automation, and maintenance. The assessment took the form of a simplified post-occupancy evaluation of the buildings, based on surveys and interviews with users and managers, besides direct observation on-site.

In total, 9 students from the University of Applied Sciences Ostwestfalen-Lippe and Delft University of Technology participated in the workshop, which was held at TU Delft from June 19th to 21st. The main deliverables were the assessment of 4 buildings within TU Delft campus, along with conceptual designs to improve the main identified problems of each case. The workshop was coordinated by Alejandro Prieto (TU Delft) with the assistance of Tommaso Venturini (TU Delft). Prof. Dr. Philomena Bluyssen, Dr. Natalia Romero, Dr. Stella Boess, and Juan Azcarate participated as guest speakers. The results of the workshop were discussed in front of a committee of façade experts from the European Façade Network (efn). The efn is a Network of European Universities with Master programmes in façade design.