An empirical enquiry into windows used in tropical office spaces

Kwabena Gyimah, Samuel Amos-Abanyie



Environmental health is very instrumental to the survival of the human race and there is the need for behavioural change for its quality. Grounded in literature is the fact that amongst all the elements of the building fabric, window is the only element which contributes holistically to Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ). However, there is no certainty that building professionals or clients consider IEQ in the selection of windows for buildings and spaces holistically. This study seeks to evaluate the various types of windows mostly used in office spaces and establish the rational for their choice. Questionnaires in the form of Google forms were developed and sent to a convenient sampled population of architects and clients in Ghana. Results shows that none of the architects or clients choice of window had a holistic rational towards achieving all the variables of IEQ - thermal comfort, lighting quality, air quality and sound quality. Most of the choices by respondents were based on at least one of the variables of IEQ as a rational. In some cases, the rational of clients had no link to IEQ. Both clients and professionals suggested modifications to current office windows for better IEQ. It is also recommended that further research is carried out to validate the findings. The relevance of this study cannot be down played as knowledge is acquired for re-engineering of appropriate and holistic window towards IEQ.

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Civil Engineering and Architecture Faculty- University Amar Telidji of Laghouat JBMS@2019.