Body and breathing are key

When designing buildings and infrastructure the human body is always key to the design. Vision, hearing, physical constraints of human sizes, it all relates to the building. Even more so, says Jansma, the sense of one’s body also creates a feeling that is crucial for the success of the building.

For example in a soccer stadium many people prefer to sit on a narrow bench and touch each other all the time, because that is part of the experience they seek. As architect one always looks for optimums between different interests and possibilities, analyzing use patterns and identifying other spaces and timeslots to be used. Issues like safety and emergency situations are taken into account as well of course. There are programs that do the math about how quick everybody can be out of the building. It has also to do with breathing. How long can an average person hold their breath and be in another space where it is safe and there is no smoke? So that has to do with respiration systems.