Impact of Recreation Facilities on the Environment

Facilities to the Environment
While the concept of developing recreation centers has significant economic and social development benefits, these recreation facilities also bring about with them, a far greater set of problems in depletion of local resources, energy consumption, environmental pollution and loss of biodiversity and surviving local cultures. Therefore, as construction industry professionals, in order to develop design strategies to counter these problems, we need to engage in the endeavor of finding possible solutions. This study focusses on the general nature of how recreation facilities impact the environment and how best to mitigate these effects. The study embarks in seeking information by examining various parameters of design of recreation facilities, with direct impact to the environment such as site planning, structure, materials, waste management, passive and active design strategies. The research is done, so that the construction and tourism industry stakeholders could evaluate their position on environmental issues, by obtaining fresh information for a distinctive part of the world. The data were collected by means of observation, measurements, photography, sketches, interviews and administration of questionnaires. The study found that the design practices of recreation facilities in Kenya, generally has little empathy towards the macro and micro climate considerations, necessary to incorporate the environment with the structure, and that stakeholders mostly lack the necessary knowledge, skills and interest to meet the basic objectives of social and environmental responsibility. Recreation facilities which have incorporated environmental design, are injudiciously feigned as relatively higher-cost developments. However, this narrow perspective is incomplete because it fails to recognize that operational costs of such recreation facilities are not only cost effective in the long run, but also lessens the detrimental effects they exhibit to the surrounding wildlife and environment. As construction industry professionals, it is therefore, necessary to initiate the development of an integrated system of design strategies and practices, not only limited to recreation facilities stakeholders, but also to all parties concerned with environmental protection and sustainability, and to re-evaluate and reconsider international, national and local design policies.

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