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TOOLS FOR SPACE ANALYSIS AND DESI GN

Mark S. C. Nelson, Design Studies Department


ComETS. May 2, 2011
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Introduction

Overview
Identifying the diversion functions and user needs of a space
Using tools designed to visualize and organize the relationships
between those functions
Working with a designer to bring that visualization to reality

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Programming: Identifying the diverse functions
and user needs of a space
Elements of a program
Includes physical requirements
Includes experiential requirements
Includes aspirational requirements
Includes conceptual, budgetary, and diverse requirements
Begins with data collection
Research into other spaces with similar functions
Interviews with users and owners/managers
Visits to existing spaces
Measuring and recording
Drawing and sketching to help take a closer look
Participant observation
Continues with organizing data
Usually results in a written document that is used for designing



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Space Planning Tools: Used to visualize and
organize the relationships between functions
Data collection results in large amounts of information
Data must be prioritized
Need way to turn relationships into physical reality
Tools often best used without addressing actual floor plans to start
Relationships most evident when viewed abstractly
Different tools optimized to isolate different types of relationships
Best to draw map to find best routes before starting on a trip
Quite often, the final location of a space is not known right away
Programming can help make choices between considered spaces
Three common and straightforward analytical tools
Adjacency matrices
Square footage chart
Bubble diagrams
Additional tools
Programming matrix, figure/ground, parti and other diagrams

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Space Planning Tools: Adjacency Matrix
Shows which spaces need to be close to each other
Not tied to any floor plan
Can become too complex for large projects
Most useful when strong, medium and weak adjacencies are noted
On large projects, use on matrix for the whole project, grouping
functions together, and then do additional matrices for smaller
elements

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Space Planning Tools: Square Footage Chart
Especially useful when comparing relative percentages
Can be tied back to budgeting
Pay special attention to circulation as a percentage this is often the
most common problematic area
Can be used to develop plans, but not tied to plans during programming

Square Footages-
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Space Planning Tools: Bubble Diagrams
Draws info from the adjacency matrix
In simplest form, looks only at relationships
All bubbles are the same size
One type of line connects related spaces
More sophisticated form shows relative sizes and relationship strengths
Large bubbles show larger spaces, etc.
Can be color coded
Different types of lines show strengths of relationships
Crossed lines mean the
diagram is not working
Group spaces together at first
that have similar functions:
four classrooms might show up as
one bubble


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Adjacency Matrix Exercise
Divide into teams
Develop an adjacency matrix for a media educational center, for group
learning and presentation as well as individual work. For purposes of
the exercise, interview each other to determine what you think are
proper adjacencies
Show high, low and none as relationship strengths
Address the following functions:
Space for five groups of four students to meet and make noise
Two media classrooms, flexible configurations, 16 students each
Help desk and check-in space
Printer area
Storage
Space for 100 students to work at computers
Space to display student work on an ongoing basis
Three private offices
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Bubble Diagram Exercise Part 1
Use the same teams as for the Adjacency Matrix exercise
Use information from the adjacency matrix exercise
Show high, low and none as relationship strengths
Show relative sized of areas. You will have to guess at this.
Address the following functions:
Space for five groups of four students to meet and make noise
Two media classrooms, flexible configurations, 16 students each
Help desk and check-in space
Printer area
Storage
Space for 100 students to work at computers
Space to display student work on an ongoing basis
Three private offices
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Bubble Diagram Exercise Part 2
Rework your bubble diagram from Part 1
Squeeze the functions so that they proportionally fit into a long narrow
space
TOOLS FOR SPACE ANALYSIS AND DESI GN
Mark S. C. Nelson, Design Studies Department
ComETS. May 2, 2011
mnelson2@wisc.edu