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Overheating risk in ‘common areas’ of buildings

Location: Fargate, Sheffield


Managing overheating risk within residential properties is an important aspect of sustainable building design.  Whilst most efforts focus on thermal comfort levels within dwellings, the assessment and design of un-occupied common areas is an important aspect which is often overlooked.   The risk of overheating in common areas can be perpetuated where the building incorporates centralised energy plant which often distributes hot water around the building in corridors. Poor design of these areas can exasperate heat gains, making the dwellings themselves less comfortable in summer months and overheating risk harder to manage.

Envision have recently undertaken a specific exercise to assess the overheating risk of corridors of the development at Fargate, Sheffield under the CIBSE TM59 Criteria. Whilst there is no mandatory target under TM59, if an operative temperature of 28 °C is exceeded for more than 3% of total annual hours, this should be flagged as a significant risk to the development.  This assessment had not been included within the original design appraisal and the purchasing fund requested further details to demonstrate that the building would be capable of maintaining comfortable conditions year – round.  The brief required accurate results to be produced in a short window of time.

Our expert building simulation team constructed a 3D dynamic model to show compliance with the criteria in CIBSE TM59 and produced a report within 5 days of instruction. Envision used building plans, elevations and sections along with construction details and building services details as inputs to the model and the analysis shows that compliance with the above criteria would be achieved in accordance with TM59.

Producing an accurate and holistic assessment of overheating risk is important and requires consideration of a range of parameters. Envision are experts in this field and can provide economical and timely results. Please contact Ciaran Dorrity if you would like to know more.

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