Building Technology
Response to coastal conditions
I am a student of architecture, and recently I did a project of designing a low-budget traveller's lodge on the coast of Pondicherry. The site was situated 34 meters away from the sea, the Bay of Bengal. The context specified was primarily the response to the climate out there and the building material was given as laterite stone and timber(for pitched roofs). Now knowing that Pondicherry receives approx. 3m of rain every year, the roof angle had to be at least 30 degrees in order to quickly get rid of the water and avoid leakage, but this region also has lots of sun glare and is prone to cyclonic winds. In order to prevent the roof from being lifted off and also to provide visual comfort to the insiders, there is a need to lower the overhang as well as make the roof shallower for the easy passage of the wind. Once I extend the overhang, I lose the view of the sea which was, in a way, a major consideration. So what needs to done here? Any suggestions? The site is in the middle of a plain landscape which is interrupted by only palm trees.
Arusree Mohanty
Response to coastal conditions

Can I suggest:

(a) a veranda to allow for sun glare and the sloping roof overhang, and
(b) put in a thin flat concrete roof first and overlay this with the sloping roof. Then the sloping roof cannot be "lifted off" by cyclonic winds from below.

This double roof construction is used in Turkey, but I think the reason is to avoid having to use the more expensive option of horizontal wooden beams to support the rafters in the roof.
Frank John Snelling


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