Green Building visions in historical Arab cities, case study of Al-Jazirah Al-Hamrah-Northern UAE


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With the oil discovery during 1960s, and the initiation of the UAE in 1972, most of old house and building has been replaced with modern building. Al-Jazirah Al-Hamrah in the Northern UAE, the only historical UAE city maintains its original plan, since its existence in the seventeen century. Looking at the city plan one can find it has not been planned randomly. However, there are several critical issues have been taking into the account from environmental perspective, which is in present day terms call “Green Building” as follow: 1. All building –especially- houses are facing north to do not be encounter with the sunlight directly during the day time. In the present day terms it is energy saving either for the room light during the day, or temperature control during summer and winter. 2. All house rooms, shops, buildings have shades in the front of the building, rooms windows are under the shade parallel to the rooms doors. The windows are quit large are the (2 X2.5). These windows entering the light during the early hours of the day, and shaded cool air to the room during the summer. 3. All house rooms, shops, building, have louver/machicolation كوة, in the back of the room at very high elevation near the ceiling to enter the light during the mid day and after noon with out entering maximum heat. 4. The main gate of the house is normally facing east, although it is mainly related to women of the house protection, but it is again could be related to the shade. In the morning when the sun directly hits the gate, the temperature is cooler, or during the summer visitors can wait the neighbor wall shade. 5. There is always passageway between the houses from all sides of the house; this is allowing the fresh air recycling the house yard. 6. The size of the passageway between the houses creates shades for the pedestrians. 7. The houses in the town built on the coast sand dunes in higher elevations to prevent the town from the see flood, during abrupt storms.

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Journal: TechConnect Briefs
Volume: Technical Proceedings of the 2010 Clean Technology Conference and Trade Show
Published: June 21, 2010
Pages: 329 - 335
Industry sectors: Advanced Materials & Manufacturing | Energy & Sustainability
Topics: Materials for Sustainable Building, Sustainable Materials
ISBN: 978-1-4398-3419-0