Balconies and Terraces - are they always windy?

Marco2010Notes 300x225There are many factors that influence the wind conditions on the balconies and elevated terraces of tall residential buildings. These may include: building shape, elevation relative to proximate buildings, elevation above ground, orientation combined with the local wind statistics, impact of neighbours (both shielding and accelerated flows), exposure to oncoming wind, and balcony location. Some of these variables are under the control of the design team, but many are not.

However, the design team does generally have the ability to choose the location of balconies and those decisions early in the design process can enhance the usefulness of these outdoor spaces and so make the building a more successful project. In general, when balconies are centrally located along the face of a building (e.g. the red rectangle labelled (i) in image) they will be more pleasant more of the time than corner balconies (e.g. the red rectangle labelled (ii) in the same image). From a wind comfort perspective, corner balconies should be avoided in design as they will be used less by the owner and can be more susceptible to dislodged furniture due to wind.