The Architect's Studio Companion
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The Architect's Studio Companion

Rules of Thumb for Preliminary Design

Edward Allen, Joseph Iano

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eBook - ePub

The Architect's Studio Companion

Rules of Thumb for Preliminary Design

Edward Allen, Joseph Iano

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About This Book

The time-saving resource every architect needs

The Architect's Studio Companion is a robust, user-friendly resource that keeps important information at your fingertips throughout the design process. It includes guidelines for the design of structure, environmental systems, parking, accessibility, and more. This new sixth edition has been fully updated with the latest model building codes for the U.S. and Canada, extensive new information on heating and cooling systems for buildings, and new structural systems, all in a form that facilitates rapid preliminary design. More than just a reference, this book is a true companion that no practicing architect or student should be without.

This book provides quick access to guidelines for systems that affect the form and spatial organization of buildings and allows this information to be incorporated into the earliest stages of building design. With it you can:

  • Select, configure, and size structural systems
  • Plan for building heating and cooling
  • Incorporate passive systems and daylighting into your design
  • Design for parking and meet code-related life-safety and accessibility requirements

Relying on straightforward diagrams and clear written explanations, the designer can lay out the fundamental systems of a building in a matter of minutes—without getting hung up on complicated technical concepts. By introducing building systems into the early stages of design, the need for later revisions or redesign is reduced, and projects stay on time and on budget. The Architect's Studio Companion is the time-saving tool that helps you bring it all together from the beginning.

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Building Codes and Zoning Ordinances
Occupancies: International Building Code
Occupancies: National Building Code of Canada


A designer works under complex legal constraints that exert a powerful influence on the form a building may take. Local zoning ordinances control building uses, heights, areas, distances from property lines, and on-site parking capacities. Building codes enacted at the municipal, county, state, or provincial level regulate everything from building heights and areas to the types of interior finish materials that may be used. Further constraints are often imposed by local fire districts, by health and safety regulations pertaining to particular uses, and by national regulations governing equal access to public facilities and housing.
Zoning laws and use-specific codes are most often promulgated at the local level and do not lend themselves to simple generalization from one jurisdiction to the next. For this reason, this book does not attempt to address these requirements, and the designer should consult the regulations in effect for guidance in these areas. On the other hand, although building codes are also enforced at local levels, the vast majority of North American building codes are derived from just a few nationally recognized model codes. The use of model codes as the basis for the majority of local building codes results in sufficient standardization that these regulations can be simplified and generalized in a meaningful way. Thus, preliminary guidelines can be provided for incorporating building code requirements into your project.
This book provides building code information based on two model building codes: the International Code Council's International Building Code (2015) and the National Research Council of Canada, Canadian Commission on Building and Fire Codes' National Building Code of Canada (2015). These two model codes form the basis for the vast majority of building codes enacted by jurisdictions throughout the United States and Canada. This book condenses from these two model codes the provisions that have the most direct effects on building form: height and area limitations, beginning on page 371,...

Table of contents

Citation styles for The Architect's Studio Companion
APA 6 Citation
Allen, E., & Iano, J. (2017). The Architect’s Studio Companion (6th ed.). Wiley. Retrieved from (Original work published 2017)
Chicago Citation
Allen, Edward, and Joseph Iano. (2017) 2017. The Architect’s Studio Companion. 6th ed. Wiley.
Harvard Citation
Allen, E. and Iano, J. (2017) The Architect’s Studio Companion. 6th edn. Wiley. Available at: (Accessed: 14 October 2022).
MLA 7 Citation
Allen, Edward, and Joseph Iano. The Architect’s Studio Companion. 6th ed. Wiley, 2017. Web. 14 Oct. 2022.