13 points That are important for your site analysis

Are you an Architect or pursuing your architecture degree? Then you must know how important the Architecture site analysis is to start with any of your projects.

The purpose of site analysis is that it gives direction to build your concepts/design and clarify all the point that is important in the design process. It also gives many points to support you throughout your design process.

But, every time you start site analysis you must come to a point where you are stuck on things like what to include in site analysis, how to start, and what things to keep in mind, Right?

Now you don’t have to worry about all this, because I got you covered. Here I will give you a list of 13 points and some of them will be with a site analysis diagram that you have to include in your site analysis. These points you can use as your checklist for site analysis and that will help you structure your work, also isn’t it feel great once we tick everything from the checklist? So, Let’s start with the points that should be there in any of your site analyses whether it’s an urban project or institutional, or any other category. 

1.Site Area

So, the first thing you need to do is measure your site area. site Area will give you things that will help you start thinking of your project. Once you define your site area you will get the basic shape of the site and sometimes that can give you ideas for your concept. For example, If your site has some unique shape then you can take it as your concept and include it in your design.

It also gives you an idea about the scale of your project.

2. Accessibility to the site

Site analysis – Connectivity diagram

Now the second thing is site accessibility. you just don’t have to show access to the site you also have to document the road networks around the site and the road width. Along with that, you will need to take notes on the traffic conditions and the vehicular/pedestrian movements. Also, the surrounding transportation system (bus station, auto stand or metro stops, etc.) is equally important to understand.

Accessibility of the site will help you design the entries or any other access point in your project and from this, you can also decide the internal road system of the site, parking space, or the placement of the spaces.

3. Climate Condition

Climate is an important factor in designing and it helps you take many solid decisions in your design process. In the climate study, you have to study about sun path, temperature, wind direction, precipitation, and the whole climate condition. From this data, you will get to know the design consideration in that particular climate condition.

From the climate data, you will get ideas about placing your openings and it will also help you in space planning. You will even learn about the materials that can be used and sometimes it will define your roof or projection design. 

For the climate analysis, Metoblue is one of the great sources to get climate information of any city or region.

4. Open-Built Spaces

Site analysis – Open-built space diagram

Data about open-built space will show the density of the area and the ratio you have to maintain in your project. In any architecture project, you have to follow some rules to design built spaces, and to design your space you can take inspiration from the surrounding situation.

If you just decided the area you want to work in and looking for the right site then you might have to check the ownership status of the open plots and build if you are doing any redevelopment project. It will help you build a strong reason for choosing that particular site.

Tip: Before visiting the site raster the area of the site and its surroundings and take some printout of that plan with you It will help you mark things exactly as they are and you will not have to guess on your own after coming back from the site.

5. Land use

Site analysis – Land use diagram

Whenever you work on any project context is very important. So for the context study, one of the things you need to prepare drawings for is land use and building use plans. In these drawings, you will mark buildings and open plots with different colors which will indicate the uses of that, like, residential, commercial, institutional, or any other and for the open plot you have to show if that comes in residential, commercial, or any other zones or it may be for parks or recreational activities or it can be agricultural land.

From the land/building use plans you will know that the project you have decided is appropriate for that area or not and if you have not defined any project then you can use this data to design your program.

Tip — for the color code of the zone check the color which is dedicated to each zone by the government.

6. Built Context

Site Analysis – Built Context Diagram

In the built context you have to document the surrounding building’s height, age, and condition. You have to look at the floors of buildings and when it was built and the current condition whether it is in a good condition or bad or it needs redevelopment. This will help you understand the current situation of the area.

From the built context you can design according to it like what height your project should have and how you can incorporate your building in that particular surrounding though the height of the building also depends on other factors.

7. Prominent Architecture Style

In some projects site surrounding follows a specific kind of architectural style and if you want to build around them then it is very important to understand its architectural style like its details, any architectural elements, construction techniques, and materials, etc.

Once you understand the architectural style of the surrounding you will know how you can design your project and you can take inspiration from it or maybe you can create something different from it to make your design stand out but for that also you need to understand the other buildings style.

8.Formal/Informal Activities

You also have to look at the activities around the site both formal and informal. These activities will help you make programs for your project. From looking at the surrounding activities you can figure out the purpose or decide the program of your project.

You can show them in diagrams by dividing them in groups and color coding and you can show that in the plans where those activities are mostly taking place.

9.User group

Site analysis – User Group Diagram

User group data can be based on various things and that is something that you can document while looking at activities around the site. So, a user group can be divided according to age, gender, work, income, household, caste, religion, and any other specific thing if your project needs.

The user group will give you ideas to build your program further and with that, it also affects your design. Your design sometimes can be based on the whole user experience and in that case you have to understand your user very closely.

10.Site Edge Condition

In the Site edge condition, you have to look at physical features around the site and which are footpaths, Street furniture, and the services (electrical, plumbing, gas, etc.) around the site. The more you gather data about the surroundings more you will understand the site and it will be helpful to your project.

11.Site Potentials

Site potential includes views, landscape, and any special feature your site has. Every site has some kind of problems and potential which you need to take care of and if your site has some potential then you can use it as one of the best elements of your design and if it has some problems then you have to find a way to use that in your design the way it can work in your favor.

12.Green Cover

If your site has some important green feature that cannot be neglected, then you have to document it. like If it has a significant amount of green features like big trees or some important plants then you can use it in your design. Also, Some amount of green cover is important to include in design as per the rules and also to who doesn’t like green spaces, right?

13.Bylaws / Building Feasibility

Now, the last thing on the list is by-laws that you cannot ignore while designing, especially when it is a real onsite project. Bylaws or building feasibility contains all the technical and legal things which you need When you work on any

While doing site analysis you should find out about that particular city and area’s rules and regulations. This will be used to get all things that are important to start the project like margins, open-built areas, floors, building services, etc.

So, If you came this far then you made It to the end of the checklist, and I hope you find it important for the next time you start your site analysis.

Now let me give you some extra information that you might need.

Here is a list of things that you should carry with you while going for site analysis:

  • Camera — It does not matter if you do not own a DSLR phone camera will also be great
  • Measure tape
  • Sketchbook
  • Pencil and some color pens — It will help you define things
  • Mobile phone — just in case to take notes or photos or maybe find a north!!

Here you have come to an end of it and do share your thought with us in the comments if you find this helpful.

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