12 Basic Principles of Building Planning

21st November 2020 0 By Malay Sautya

12 Basic Principles of Building Planning

Whether it is “general housing” or “Industrial housing” or any other type of housing, certain general principle of planning should carefully be considered and checked before finalization of the plan. In this article we are going to discuss 12 basics principle of building planning:

12 Basic Principles of Building Planning
12 Basic Principles of Building Planning
  1. Aspect
  2. Prospect
  3. Groping
  4. Furniture Required
  5. Circulation
  6. Flexibility
  7. Roominess
  8. Privacy
  9. Sanitation
  10. Elegance
  11. Economy
  12. Practical Consideration

1. Aspect

Aspect means the peculiarity of the arrangement of doors and windows in the outer walls of a building, particularly of residential buildings, which allow the occupants to experience the natural gifts such as sunshine, breeze, scenery etc.

12 Basics Principles of Building Planning - Aspect

The aspect creates a pleasant and hygienic atmosphere in the building. It is necessary that air movement should occur in building at the level of occupancies and use.

As per rule every habitable room shall have opening directly to the external air or into an open verandah, excluding doors inclusive of frames shall not be less than :

( a ) One-tenth of the floor area for dry hot climate ;
( b ) One-sixth of the floor area for wet hot climate ;
( c ) One – eighth of the floor area for intermediate climate ;
( d ) One – twelfth of the floor area for cold climate, and cross ventilation by means of windows shall be effected either by means of windows in opposite walls or if this is not possible or advisable, then at least in the adjoining walls.

Below we have given some ideas for different rooms and their aspect

i. The living room should have southern or south-east aspect.

ii. All the bedrooms should have either the west or south-west aspect, This is because the air required in summer would blow from this direction.

iii. The kitchen should have an eastern aspect so as to allow the sun to refresh and purifies the air in the kitchen with its first ray. The kitchen would remain cool during the later part of the day.

iv. The store rooms should have a northern aspect as there will be no sun from the north side.

v. The study rooms, class rooms, etc., should have north aspect as light received from both will be diffused and evenly distributed.

2. Prospects

Prospect is the views as seen while looking through the windows and doors from a certain room of the house.


Everyone expects that the scene around their house will be beautiful and pleasant to look at. However, it is not always possible that the views of every side from the house will be beautiful and pleasant.

Thus, the doors and windows should be located in such a way that occupants can enjoy the outside views while looking through those doors and windows, and toward unpleasant views, the opening should not be provided.


But doing so the quality of aspect may hamper. In such circumstances experienced planner may minimize the conflict between aspect and prospect i.e., opening in external walls shall be provided for a cheerful atmosphere in the room but pleasant views remain concealed.

3. Grouping

Grouping is the arrangement of various rooms with reference to their function. The relationships of the spaces should be such that there is a feeling of invitation and transition, rather than a feeling of abrupt change. For the residential building planning should be grouped as (a) Living area; (b) Sleeping area; (c) Service area; and (d) Circulation area.

(a) Living Area

The living area is the area for general use and should be next to the front Varanda and near the entrance.

Drawing room or guest room should not provide direct Passage to the bedrooms but should be adjacent to the dining room. At the same time kitchen should be kept away from the living room to avoided smoke and smells.

The living room should be sufficiently ventilated and spacious in order to accommodate furniture. It should get an attractive view of the surrounding and garden etc.

In extreme cases, the living room may be located at the centre and accesses or approaches to various units and apartments may radiate from it.

(b) Sleeping Area

This is the area of bedrooms and should be located so as to guard privacy. The site should be sufficient to accommodate beds, dressing table, etc. Attached toilet to the bedroom should be preferred.

c) Service Area

This includes the area of kitchen, dining rooms, bath rooms and toilet

The dining room should be near to the kitchen. This will make it much easier to carry food.

Kitchen room should be avoided near living room, bed room, and study room to avoided smoke and smells.

d) Circulation Area

This is area for passage, lobby, corridor, etc., It should be minimum but well ventilated and lighted.

e) Other Area

Other areas such as study room, Puja room, etc., may be located near the living room or bedroom.

4. Furniture Required

Furniture silently tells us what this room is made for because the requirements of furniture for different rooms are also different.

12 Basics Principles of Building Planning - Furniture Required
Furniture Required

During planning location of furniture and other utility articles should be so arranged in the respective rooms as to give maximum area for movements, convenience for operating door and window shutters and a comfortable breeze to bed.

It is better to create a sketch plan showing furniture positions so that it can be made sure that doors, windows, and circulation space do not preclude the placing of a sufficient number of pieces. In such plans, positions of beds, heavy furniture pieces such as sofa, big furniture, chest of drawers, etc. should be shown.

For the public building like school, thestres furniture requirement plan is essential to determine the strength of accommodation.

Full article will be coming soon