Phase 2: Design

Infrastructure & utilities

These activities help students to consider the networks that connect a building. They emphasise the importance of sustainable transport within a community and help students to appreciate the impacts of providing infrastructure and utilities.

  • Deliver these activities within a double session, so that you can include a tour of your campus using a plan of the utility connections.
  • You will need site plans and online mapping for this task.

Explore the utilities and infrastructure that connect your school or college

Introduction

  • Use What connects a building? with students.
  • Get them to imagine laying these utilities again for your school or college. How much disruption would this cause, and why?

Main activity

  • Using Sustainable transport, look at a plan of your school or college – online aerial photography will do.
  • How is it connected to roads and paths etc?
  • In groups, students use printouts of online maps to improve transport connections.
  • They could change the size of car parks – what would they replace them with?
  • Groups present back their ideas.

Extension – double period

  • Use Explore your site and a site plan to take a guided tour of your campus.
  • Can students find each utility that is marked on the plan?
  • How would these affect future construction work on site – what would designers and site workers have to think about?

Plenary

  • Gather ideas from each group – you can create a chart on the board.
  • Discuss which jobs are of interest.

(You can use the communication questions from Who designs a large department?)

Differentiation

Easier/Level 1:
Get students to find out how each utility is connected to their home. Miss out the site tour unless you are sure your students will learn from it.

Harder:
Students consider the cost of connecting to utilities and the work required to raise pylons or poles, lay cables in trenches etc.

Answers: What connects a building?

Industrial park:
major roads for transporting materials, goods and people in and out; power for industrial equipment.

Power station:
site away from housing; railway line for transporting oil, coal or nuclear fuel.

Shopping centre:
road access for customers and deliveries; site close to major housing areas.

Answers: Sustainable transport

Public transport can be more good for reasons that include:

communities:
less traffic congestion; safer roads; chance for people to mix

environment:
lower particle emissions (cleaner local air); fewer carbon emissions (lower contribution to global warming); less need for oil, a non-renewable resource.

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