AN INVESTIGATION OF DAYLIGHTING IN HOSPITAL DESIGN A CASE OF NAIROBI

ABSTRACT

Properly daylight spaces can give character to a building or it spaces. Daylight can also create unwanted lighting conditions of discomfort and glare for building users which affects building occupant’s performance and health. Current and future hospital designs need to provide healthier healing environments by improving access to daylight and a connection to nature through provision of view. Most Kenyan hospitals have been designed with a focus on providing service efficient healing environments at the expense of physiological and psychological comfort of patients, staff and visitors.

This study explored daylighting strategies and how their application in hospital design to create a healing environment. The analysis of two case studies put forth five design parameters that guide the design of a naturally lit hospital which are;orientation,building footprint,sun control,courtyards,skylights and clerestories.These parameters were used to evaluate the design of the local case studies The author then developed design recommendations that would improve daylighting of hospitals in Nairobi .

Case study approach was used to carry out fieldwork due to its flexibility and expansiveness as a research method.Kenyatta National Hospital ,Mater Hospital and Mama Lucy Hospital were chosen as case studies for this thesis.Fieldwork findings affirm the statement that the design of modern hospitals priotizes efficiency of services over patient comfort and healing.The study recommends the sensitization of stakeholders in the built environment on the importance of daylighting and sustainable design in creating healing environment;fomulation of legislation on the specifics of daylight required for building types and the upgrading of the three hospitals studied to ensure visual comfort where possible.

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