1.1 Site Context and Analysis
Each federal property or project is unique and must respond to its surroundings. Planning and design begin with analyzing and understanding a site’s key features, context and place within the broader Capital region.
Designers should complete an examination of the site’s existing context and surroundings, according to the prompts provided in this section, to inform the rest of the design process. The objectives are designs that are well-informed, responsive to their context, suitable to their function, and pleasing in their form.
Inventory and assess biophysical features (e.g. topography, vegetation, waterways) to determine important attributes and character-defining features to be preserved or enhanced.
Inventory and assess all existing buildings, structures, and infrastructure before the development of a site plan to identify what to conserve, modify, add to, or replace.
Arrange and design sites to suit both the existing surrounding context and building typologies (e.g. rural, urban, suburban) as well as the planned urban form.
Patterns and Form
Study the prevailing pattern of urban form, fabric, street configuration and building placement. Arrange the design to contribute to a harmonious composition of parts and an intuitive hierarchy of elements and spaces.
Determine the function of each part of a project and arrange them to suit their purpose and contribute to the purpose of others. Demonstrate how the project will enhance the site’s integration with its surroundings.
Respond to climatic conditions through choices such as orienting buildings and public spaces to maximize solar penetration in winter and shade in summer, and to avoid adverse microclimatic effects related to wind.
Employ the highest planning and design standards to sites containing, or in proximity to, national symbols and landmarks.
Ensure appropriate transitions in height, scale, proportion, form and spatial arrangement of surrounding development and adjacent sites.
Orient the site and locate buildings and structures to frame and enhance important views of national symbols and significant landscapes. Ensure that these views are protected.