INTER.ONE Tools for Architecture

Tools for Architecture is a research unit based at the Architectural Association in London formed by a team of architecture undergraduate students and lead by Space Popular directors Lara Lesmes and Fredrik Hellberg. Work at TFA aims to develop new experience driven design methods.

Ceiling height catalogue

The following catalog was made to understand the relationship between ceiling height and activities. Ceiling height varies depending on the program they accommodate.

Before attempting the design of wall frames, this was looked at, as the size of walls affect our psychological responses. For the moment the system I propose will be based on the 8 foot ceiling, but eventually a number of heights could be available.




Psychological effects

The field of psychology offers many case studies on the effect of ceiling height on our behaviour, aesthetic judgement, our emotions and the experience.

1. Fischl and Ga¨rling (2004) found that ceiling height ranked among the top three architectural details that influenced consumers’ psychological well-being.

2. Homes with higher ceilings induce clearer and improved thinking, more energy, and better health among residents.

3. Rooms of different heights trigger response from different parts of the brain. Rooms with higher ceilings were more likely to be judged as beautiful, and activated structures involved in visuospatial exploration and attention in the dorsal stream. Enclosed rooms were more likely to elicit exit decisions and activated the anterior midcingulate cortex (aMCC).

4. According to the US National Building Code, the standard ceiling height is eight feet or 2.44 m (Rybczynski, 2009). Nevertheless, it appears that people tend to prefer ceilings that are about two feet (.61 m) higher than this standard. Specifically, participants preferred higher ceilings for the activity of listening than reading, dancing, dining and talking.