Books  Ecological & Biological Sciences  Science & Technology  Design & Construction 

Traditional Construction for a Sustainable Future

By: Carole Ryan

320 pages, 262 photos, 53 illus

Taylor & Francis

Paperback | Jan 2011 | #189234 | ISBN-13: 9780415467575
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £29.99 $39/€34 approx
Hardback | Jan 2011 | #189233 | ISBN-13: 9780415467568
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £100.00 $131/€112 approx

About this book

Since the spread of classical design and construction amongst the upper echolons of British society in the late 17th century, traditional construction methods have largely fallen by the wayside. Centuries later, as the construction industry faces up to its environmental responsibilities, this book explores its rich and ancient tradition to provide tried and trusted solutions to modern day construction problems.

By way of introduction, the ancient and historical lifestyles that dictated the nature of traditional construction are explored, before focussing on its health and ecological benefits. As well as cultural background, this book includes a detailed scientific description of traditional building materials and their constituents which draws a sharp contrast with modern petrochemical-based materials.

The studies of traditional buildings included reveal the sustainability of features such as natural ventilation and breathing walls, and comparisons with modern construction methods show how they could prevent 'sick building syndrome'. The author argues that maintenance for long life, by contrast with the modern concept of life-cycle costing, is at the nub of sustainability and underlies the contribution traditional building construction can make to tackling climate change.

Over 250 original photos, and over 50 bespoke diagrams illustrate the features, techniques, and characteristics of traditional construction that could make such a valuable contribution to the industry today.

Inclusion of a detailed study of how traditional methods related to current building regulations make this a practical and useful guide for construction professionals, as well as ammunition for the informed client - Ancient Monuments Society


1. The Natural Way of Life, the Birth of the Traditional House and its Demise 2. Traditional Building Materials, Their Sustainability, and the Contrast with Modern Materials 3. Traditional Sustainable Building Construction- Ancient and Modern 4. Thermal Performance and the Breathing Wall 5. Climate, Site and Thermal Performance 6. The Role of the Building Regulations in Traditional Building Construction 7. The Pathology of Traditional Buildings

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Bournemouth University, UK

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