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Precedent based design foundations for parametric design: The case of navigation and wayfinding

  • Kondyli, Vasiliki ;
  • Bhatt, Mehul ;
  • Hartmann, Timo
  • Received : 2017.12.15
  • Accepted : 2018.05.18
  • Published : 2018.10.25

Abstract

Parametric design systems serve as powerful assistive tools in the design process by providing a flexible approach for the generation of a vast number of design alternatives. However, contemporary parametric design systems focus primarily on low-level engineering and structural forms, without an explicit means to also take into account high-level, cognitively motivated people-centred design goals. We present a precedent-based parametric design method that integrates people-centred design "precedents" rooted in empirical evidence directly within state of the art parametric design systems. As a use-case, we illustrate the general method in the context of an empirical study focusing on the multi-modal analysis of wayfinding behaviour in two large-scale healthcare environments. With this use-case, we demonstrate the manner in which: (1). a range of empirically established design precedents -e.g., pertaining to visibility and navigation- may be articulated as design constraints to be embedded directly within state of the art parametric design tools (e.g., Grasshopper); and (2). embedded design precedents lead to the (parametric) generation of a number of morphologies that satisfy people-centred design criteria (in this case, pertaining to wayfinding). Our research presents an exemplar for the integration of cognitively motivated design goals with parametric design-space exploration methods. We posit that this opens-up a range of technological challenges for the engineering and development of next-generation computer aided architecture design systems.

Keywords

human behaviour studies;navigation;wayfinding;architecture design;spatial cognition;visual perception;parametric design;architectural computing;design computing

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