By: Dr. Benny Kuriakose, Benny Kuriakose & Associates
Glass has taken over the façades of most commercial buildings in the last one or two decades. Glass lets in all the heat into our buildings and to make them thermally comfortable, we are forced to do air-conditioning, thereby not making this sustainable. The overhang of the roofs is missing in most of these buildings. Since the wall area is much higher than the roof area, the sun’s rays fall on the walls (without overhangs) and transmit more heat inside than the concrete roof. Since climate change and global warming are around the corner, it is very important for all building professionals to learn from our vernacular architecture in making the buildings more thermally comfortable.
Technology and science cannot compensate for a poorly thought-out design. Technology has failed to find a sustainable solution in this era of climate change for many issues we are facing. At least in the future, let us take the sensible paths that our forefathers have shown us. Let us blend the 21st Century know-how with the knowledge which has been passed on to us from generation to generation.