Institute For Animation and Gaming, Enugu (a Study on Passive Design Strategies as an Effective Tool in The Design of Sustainable Learning Spaces)
Every decision that architects, engineers, builders, and homeowners make about the design and operation of their buildings carries with it an energy cost, and all energy costs in turn have environmental costs. For example, changing the orientation of a window, or the colour of the roof, or adding a sun control will change the amount of electricity it uses for lighting and air conditioning. Passive design; an idea within the growing trend of green buildings, is a creative way to use the natural resources such as sunlight and breezes, to our advantage, both for heating and cooling, based on the design of buildings. Passive design can greatly reduce resource demands. Passive design is also, by necessity, coupled with and supportive of sustainable practices. Employing passive design strategies in urban environments has the benefits of reducing resource consumption, making urban living more adorable, and connecting human experience more deeply into a direct relationship with resources. This study is aimed at identifying passive design features through extensive literature study that can be incorporated into educational buildings to make them energy efficient. The study is also aimed at identifying changes in the design process that can affect energy efficiency in educational buildings. The findings from this study indicate that proper orientation, reducing openings and increasing the thickness on external walls on east and west, and use of appropriate horizontal overhang ratios for all four orientations can reduce the cooling load of educational buildings in Enugu, hence reduce the total energy use of such buildings. Finally it can be concluded that the process of designing energy efficient educational buildings is not a ‘one-man’s show’. Architects, builders, engineers, developers, interior designers and clients must collaborate to bring a change in the design practice.