The Importance Of Paying Attention To Detail In Architecture

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The architectural detailing process of a project is a long process that includes a lot of steps and patterns to consider. The designing issue is not consecutive for making a theoretical plan for the entire structure, the detailing, and construction of a building. It is a recurring process in which theoretical ideas are created, tried and redeveloped constantly with the point of delivering a lot of information to construct a building. The progress from designing structural plans to bring into action the project is formed from incalculable decisions while the conditions are evolving regularly. Every condition which exists already and not exists but can be must be considered and predicted. This is a general point that has significant importance for detailing a project. Decisions of materials and how they come together, the relation between them, environment, service, and other parts are impacted by choices, while the theoretical design will be affected by them again. Therefore, while designing a building, the detailing must be successful and be considered as much as the design and its concept. The suitability of the detailing part is crucial for building construction, durability, and maintenance. Besides, its propriety gives chances to develop ideas and aesthetic.

While starting the detailing process of a project, works and detailing of existing projects which have similar features with the future project can be analyzed. So, proper and improper things about projects can be realized to achieve better in the future one. Then, the environment of the area in which the building will be constructed is analyzed by considering climate, temperature, precipitation, air current, humidity, soil, altitude, noise condition of the environment and earthquake risk. These analyses are also important for the functions of the project. Therefore, the detailing of the project must be done by taking into consideration of environmental effects and function of the project. If the project is constructed in an area that gets high precipitation, waterproof materials must be used in proper placement between layers and the drainage and roof system must be installed according to it. The soil where the project is built and earthquake risk must be analyzed for choosing suitable foundation types with proper materials. If the climate of the area is humid and/or wooden material is used, vapor barriers must be used. Also, if the environment of the building is too noisy or the function of it requires to prevent sound transition, soundproof materials must be used. In terms of energy, the direction of the building is important to use solar energy and window arrangement in façades. For heating issues, after climate issues are analyzed and cost calculations are made, the decision of system type, pipe heating or forced heating system or others, can be made according to efficiency. Also, if the environment of the building is too noisy or the function of it requires to prevent sound transition, soundproof materials must be used. In final, if detailing is proper, the project and the environment work together harmoniously. To make these analyses and calculations there are digital tools to use such as ArchiCAD, Revit, and SketchUp.

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A. Allen and P. Rand categorize detail patterns three main parts which are function, constructability, and aesthetics. Every detailing process starts with questions about them. Firstly, building function can work efficiently if its detail patterns do their tasks as required. According to A. Allen and P. Rand explains it as “For a building to function well, its details must function well.” and “In architecture, function certainly includes the technical performance of the details that contribute to making a building safe and secure for its occupants. But function also includes features that affect the qualities of the forms, surfaces, and spaces that compose the building.” Function part includes patterns about controlling situations, structural support, health and safety, mechanical and electrical services and the aging of the building.

Secondly, details must have features about constructability issue. In construction process, it is expected that details installed easily, different materials work together, and fit into the design properly. A detail can work well in terms of controlling air and sound, structure, but if its cost too much, it is not a suitable detail. A. Allen and P. Rand mentioned the requirements as three general guidelines that detail should be easy to assemble, forgiving of small inaccuracies and minor mistakes, and be based on the efficient use of construction facilities, tools, and labor.  

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