Friday, July 17, 2020

Building Planning | Civil Engineering

Building Planning 

Every family needs a building to reside. In addition to residential purposes, buildings are necessary for educational, institutional, commercial, assembly, and industrial purposes.Buildings are required to material storage too.

This article introduces the basic building requirements and then explains the building planning regarding orientation, space utility, energy efficiency, and other requirements.

    Basic elements of a building

    • Foundation
    • Plinth beam
    • Walls and columns.
    • Crossbars, lintels and roof tiles.
    • Doors and windows
    • Floors
    • ceilings
    • Steps, stairs and elevators.
    • Final work
    • Construction services
    The functions of these elements and  main requirement are presented in this article.


     The foundation is the most important part of the building. 

    Construction activity begins with digging the soil for foundations and then building it. It is the lowest part of the building.

     That transfers the load from the building to the ground.

     Its main functions and requirements are:
    • Distribute the load of the structure to the ground evenly and safely.
    • To anchor the building to the ground so that under lateral loads the building does not move. 
    • Prevents the building from overturning due to lateral forces.
    • Give a level surface for the construction of the superstructure.

    Plinth beams 

     The portion of the wall between the ground level and the ground floor level is called pedestal. 

    It is usually made of stone masonry. 

    If the base is on stilts, a base beam is projected to support the wall.
    above ground level. A moisture-proof course is provided at the top of the plinth. 

    Usually it is 75mm thick.

    Concrete course

    The function of the plinth is to keep the ground floor above ground level, free of moisture. 

    Their The height is not less than 450mm.
     The plinth level is required to be at least 150mm above the road level, so that connections to the underground drainage system can be made.

    Walls and columns

    The function of walls and columns is to transfer the load from the structure.

    vertically down to transfer it to the base. 

    In addition to this wall, it performs the following functions also:
    • Encloses the building area in different compartments and provides privacy.
    •  Provides security against theft and insects.
    • Keeps the building warm in winter and cool in summer.

     Sills, lintels and tiles

    A window frame should not be placed directly on the masonry.

    It is placed on a flat concrete course 50 to 75 mm thick provided on the masonry. 

    This course is called as a windowsill. 

    The lintels are the R.C.C. or stone beams provided over door and window openings to Transfer the load crosswise to see that the door or window frame is not unduly stressed. 

    The width of lintels is equal to the width of the wall, while the thickness to be provided depends on the size of the opening.

    Chejja is the projection given outside the wall to protect doors and windows from rain. 

    They are generally made with R.C.C. Stone slabs such as chejjas are provided in low-cost houses. 

    The projection of Chejja varies from 600mm to 800mm. 

    Sometimes drops are also provided to chejjas to improve acetic look and also for extra protection from sun and rain.

    Door and window 

    The function of a door is to give access to different rooms in the build and deny access when necessary. 

    The number of doors should be as low as possible.

    The door size should be dimensioned to facilitate movement of the largest object.

    You will probably use the door.

    Windows are provided for light and ventilation in the building. 

    They are located at a height of 0.75 m.
    0.9 m from floor level. 

    In hot and humid regions, the window area should be 15 to 20 percent The floor area. 

    Another rule of thumb used to determine the size and number of windows is for each 30 m3 of interior volume must have a window opening of 1 m2.

     Floors are the important component of a building. They give work  useful area for the occupants.

     The ground floor is prepared by filling brick bats, gravel, waste stones, and well compacted.
    with not less than 100 mm of sand layer on top. 

    Lean 1: 4: 8 concrete is placed, 100mm thick. 

    In this A moisture proof course can be provided. 

    The floor is then finished according to the owner's requirements.

    The cheapest floor finish for a moderate house is with a rich 20-25mm mortar course finished with red

    The most expensive floor finish is a mosaic or marble finish.
    Other floors are generally R.C.C. Finished according to the owner's requirements.


    The roof is the highest part of the building that provides a top cover to the building. 

    It must be leak proof.

    The sloping roof like the tile roof and the A.C. foil They provide a leak-proof cover easily. 

    But they don't provide for the construction of additional floor. 

    Tiled roof give good thermal protection. Flat roofs create additional floors. 

    Terrace adds to the comfort of the occupants. 
    Water Tanks can be easily placed on flat roofs.

    Stairs, and Elevators 

    Stairs provide convenient access from ground level to ground floor level.

    They are required on exterior wall doors. 250 to 300 mm wide and 150 mm high is the ideal size for

     In no case will the size of two consecutive steps be different. The numbers of step required depends on
    The difference in ground and floor levels. Stairs give floor-to-floor access. 

    It should consist of steps of uniform sizes.

    In all public buildings, elevators will be provided for the convenience of the elderly and disabled.

    G + 3 floors without elevators can be built in shelters, but maximum floors are allowed in residential floors
    no lifts is only G + 2. 

    The lift should be located near the entrance. The size of the elevator is decided by the number of users in peak hours. 

    The elevators are available with a capacity of 4 to 20 people.


     The bottom of the slab (roof), the walls and the top of the floor need a smooth finish with plaster Then they are provided with a white wash, distemper or paints or tiles. 
    The function of finish the job is:
    •  Provide a protective cover
    •  Improves aesthetic sight
    •  Rectify defective labor
    • The finishing work for the plinth consists of pointing while for the floor it consists of polishing.

     Construction services

     water supply, sanitation and drainage works, electrical supply works and The construction of cabinets and showcases constitute the main construction services.

    To store water from the municipal supply or from the tanker, a sump is built on the property of the house
    Close to street. 

    From the sump, water is pumped into overhead tanks placed at or above ceiling level to obtain
    water 24 hours. 

    Plumbing work is done to obtain water in the kitchen, bathrooms, toilets, Sinks and garden taps.

    To drain rainwater from roofs, you need to take pipes of at least 100 mm in diameter used. 

    Proper slopes should be given to the ceiling down the intake pipe. 

    These pipes must be fixed at 10 ,15mm below the roof surface so rainwater is directed into the downspout easily.

    Sanitary fittings must be connected to ceramic pipes with traps and suitable chambers.

    The stone pipes connect to the underground drainage of the municipal lines or to the septic tank.

    Many carpentry jobs are required for construction service. 
    They are in the form of showcases, cabinets, racks, etc.

    Electricity supply is an essential part of construction services.

     The building must have Sufficient points for the supply of lights, fans and other electrical appliances.

    Basic Requirements of Building Planning

    The planning and construction of a building must be aimed at meeting the following requirements:
    • strength and stability
    • Dimensional stability
    • Resistance to humidity.
    • fire resistance
    • thermal insulation
    • sound insulation
    • Protection against termite attack.
    • Durability
    • Security against theft
    • Lighting and ventilation. 
    • Comforts and convenience
    • Economy.

    Strength and stability

    the building must be able to transfer the expected loads on its safe life span to the ground.

     Design of various structural components such as slabs, beams, walls,columns and shoes must guarantee safety.

     None of the structural components should bend, overturnand collapse.

    Dimensional stability

    Excessive deformation of structural components gives a feeling of instability and result in cracks in walls, floors, etc. 

    All structural components must be designed
    that the deviations do not exceed the permitted values specified in the codes.

    Moisture resistance

     Moisture in building is a great nuisance and can reduce the Building life. 

    Great care must be taken in planning and constructing the building to Avoid humidity.

    Fire resistance
    In terms of achieving fire resistance, the basic requirements established
    in the codes are:
     the structure should not easily ignite.
    the orientation of the building must be such that the spread of fire is slow.
    In the event of a fire, there must be an easily accessible means to vacate the building quickly.

    Thermal insulation

     A building must be so oriented and designed that it insulates the interior of heat.

     Sound insulation

    buildings must be planned against exterior and interior noise.

    Termite Protection

    Buildings must be protected from termites.


    each and every component of the building must be durable.

     Security against theft

    This is the basic need that the building owner expects.

    Lighting and ventilation

     for a healthy and happy life, natural light and ventilation are necessary. 

    There should be scattered light and good cross ventilation inside the building.

     Amenities and Conveniences

    Multiple units in the building should be grouped appropriately and integrated with user comfort and convenience in mind.


    Economy without sacrificing comfort, convenience, and durability is another staple.
    Building requirement.


    All buildings must be properly planned, taking into account the various requirements of a good building.

    Except for the strength requirement, all other requirements of a good building are taken into account at the planning.

     The strength requirement is taken into account during the structural design of the building components. 

    However,In planning the construction statutes of the statutory authorities should not be violated.
    Planning the Construction is an art combined with science.

    The building planning principles can be grouped into:
    • Orientation
    • Energy efficiency
    • Utility
    • Other building requirements

    Planning for Energy Efficiency

    The building should be planned in such a way as to provide maximum daylight, ventilation and heat

    If these requirements are met, the electrical power requirement is reduced.


     Natural light provides a hygienic atmosphere. The light shouldn't be dazzling, but it should
    be evenly distributed Provide appropriate sized windows and fans in proper positions.

    It contributes a lot for natural lighting. For residential buildings, the area of ​​the window to the floor should not be less than 1/10 while for school buildings it should not be less than 1/5 of the floor area. 

    For the factory, North light frames should be provided to obtain maximum stray light.


    ventilation is the circulation of air in the building. Natural ventilation can be accomplished by selecting and placing doors, windows, and fans in suitable locations. 
    Always, Cross-ventilation should be properly planned. 

    Provision of ceiling-level fans helps blow out hot air In the event that natural ventilation cannot be achieved for any part of the building, provide
    Ordinary or exhaust fans.

    Thermal insulation

    Thicker exterior walls provide insulation against heat. 
    Adequate ventilation, It also helps achieve thermal insulation.

     Sunshades for doors, windows and fans help
    achieving thermal insulation.

     In factories and meeting rooms, the height should be higher to reduce the temperature inside the building. 

    The position of the kilns in the factories should be located far from the other parts of the fabric. 

    The openings should be provided at a higher level in the wall to remove hot air.

    The planning principles for proper utility


     Refers to the appropriate proportion of length, width and height of the rooms in the
    building to obtain the maximum benefit from the minimum dimensions. 

    The length to width ratio should be 1.2 to
    1.5. If it is almost square, a lot of area is wasted for movement, while it is more than 1.5, it gives the
    "Tunnel" effect.

     Room doors should be properly located for maximum utility and privacy.

    Cupboards and lofts must be provided to increase the spaciousness. 

    Suitable colors for wall and floor too Give amplitude effect. The light color gives the effect of more space.

    Furniture requirements

    In planning residential buildings, office buildings, laboratories, hospitals The required furniture positions should be drawn and then the dimensions of the room, the positions of the doors, windows,
    neighborhoods etc. 

    planned, In case of planning a hostel room for two students, you may need a central location
    whereas if it is for three students, it should be near the end of the front wall. 

    Crib positions, study Tables and cabinets should be drawn and room planned. 

    When designing a living room, sofa positions,chairs, TV showcase, etc. should be drawn and the size of the room and the positions of the doors should be fixed Availability of the circulation area should be checked. 

    Therefore, the furniture requirement influences the planning of a Building largely.


     Grouping means having multiple rooms in the building for your convenience of users and their usefulness.

     A dining room should be near the kitchen, a white sanitary block should be Away from the kitchen, but convenient to the rooms. 

    In the case of offices, the administrative department is located centrally In factories, several sections are located for the product to move in one direction to obtain finally assembled after the slightest movement.

     In residential buildings the grouping is to achieve comfort, privacy and efficiency, while in the case of other buildings it is to achieve an economic service.


    Circulation means the space that must be provided to move from one room to another or from floor to floor. 

    The corridors, hallways, corridors provided serve for horizontal circulation while stairs and elevators
    serve vertical circulation. 

    Inside a room, a part of it is also used for circulation, while another portion serves for profit.

     The following points should be considered when planning circulation:
    • They must be straight.
    • They should be enough.
    • They must be sufficiently illuminated and ventilated.
    • Stairs must be easily accessible to all users.
    • The sanitary services must have access for each user through the passage hall.

    Principle of the Building Planning 

    The planning principle involves planning also to meet the following requirements:

    Sanitary comfort

    sanitary comforts include the provision of toilets, sinks,urinals, etc.

     The provision of these is not only a necessity, but also a legal requirement. 

    These facilities It must be located giving free access to all users.

     In these blocks, adequate slopes must be given to the floors to drain water easily.


    it is about locating and selecting types of doors and windows to reveal nice features and hide undesirable features of buildings from a person who sees from the outside.


    Elegance means overall effect produced for a viewer from the outside. It depends
    After the correct placement of doors, windows, fans, chejjas, balconies, etc. The elevations must be
    attractive. The width, height and projections in the building contribute a lot to the elegance. Taj
    Mahal is a famous example for its elegance.


    This aspect of planning means that a room designed for a specific purpose must be possible to use for other purposes, if necessary.

     A study room can be planned to use as a guest room.

    If a partition is provided between the living room and dining room, it is possible to remove the partition and use Living room plus dining room for family functions.

     If independent access to the backyard is given from Kitchen, backyard can be used for dining. 

    Therefore, in planning, flexibility must also be considered.


    Planning must take care of the privacy of one room from another room in a building such as well as some parts of a building of neighboring buildings and streets. 

    It is guaranteed by the appropriate grouping of rooms and adequately providing doors, windows and fans.

     Planning the entrance to the right position also goes a long way in providing privacy.

    Fire resistance

    it should be noted that concrete and masonry have better fire resistance while steel and wood have less resistance. 

    Therefore, reducing the use of steel and wood in Kitchen and bathrooms with electric heaters. 

    The kitchen must be so located that if it catches fire, it is directed away from the building by the wind rather than toward the building. 

    In public buildings and stair mounting rooms should be easily accessible and more than one should always be provided.

    Sound insulation

     Noise pollution can be reduced through proper building planning.
    Some of them are:
    • Orient the building properly so that the rooms are kept away from the road.
    • Use hollow blocks for the walls.
    • Cover the window and door openings tightly.
    • Use of false ceilings.
    • By attaching toilet cisterns to exterior walls instead of common room walls.
    • By fixing the toilet tray on a thin pad.
    • Support the pipes that pass through walls and floors by means of insulated clips.

    Protection against termites

     The building must be protected from termite attack by
    • Treatment of the base with chemical products at the time of construction.
    • Use well seasoned and well treated wood in the building.

    Theft security

     by providing thicker walls, using stronger doors and windows on exterior walls, security against theft is improved.

     Providing grills to windows and additional blinds to doors are some of the methods to improve security.

     Wall and ceiling alarms also improve building security.


    Economy without sacrificing comfort, convenience and durability is another Basic principle of planning a building. 

    For this circulation area it should be minimized.
     Materials must be so selected that the maintenance cost is minimized.

    Provision for future expansion 

    The building must be planned making an adequate provision for future expansion. 

    Some of the steps necessary for this are:
    • Improvement of elevations without disassembling any part during future expansion.
    • Extending the building horizontally or vertically without damaging the existing building.
    • Floor improvement

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