Why is it important to accurately model the land features of your project site with a toposurface?
- What aspects of a building design are most affected by the terrain features?
Accurately modeling the land features of the project site allows for proper construction and making sure that local authorities can allow for such construction. Because the reshaping of the land can be quite detrimental to the environment, I'd imagine people could try their best to minimize these land changes while optimizing their aesthetic views.
When designing a project...
- Should the building adapt to the terrain?
- Or, should you adapt the terrain to the building?
The building should adapt to the terrain! The more "hidden" a home is, the better. If a home is able to be built while minimizing land and habitat disturbance, that would be ideal. When designing a project, considering the local flora and fauna is essential. Having something stick out like a sore thumb (unless it's a huge white house for albedo purposes) shows a lot of disturbance to existing terrain.
What are the advantages of stacking the levels of a multi-story building vertically?
Building up rather than out is part of LEED's credits in terms of floor-to-area ratio and their credit category of sustainable sites. Building up rather than out minimizes the building's footprint and therefore land impact. Stacking in design allows for simple construction and easier plumbing. The only reason I can think of to building horizontally rather than vertically is if it is underground and the house wants to really blend into its surrounding environment.