These guidelines provide an integrated approach to the cost-effective design of perimeter zones in new commercial buildings and existing building retrofits. They function as a quick reference for building designers, through a set of easy steps and rules-of-thumb, emphasizing "how-to" practical details. References are given to more detailed sources of information, should the reader wish to go further.
The design method used in this document emphasizes that building decisions should be made within the context of the whole building as a single functioning system rather than as an assembly of distinct parts. This integrated design approach looks at the ramifications of each individual system decision on the whole building. For example, the decision on glazing selection will have an effect on lighting, mechanical systems, and interior design. Therefore, the entire design team should participate and influence this glazing decision—which typically rests with the architect alone. The benefit of an integrated design approach is a greater chance of success towards long-term comfort and sustained energy savings in the building.