Provide for an outdoor lifestyle Print

Design Outcome

​​Design Checklist​

  1. The primary outdoor space is located to afford privacy to its users and receive direct sunlight during the times it will be most used
  2. ​The outdoor spaces are attractive and allow for a wide range of functions; at least one outdoor space allows occupants and guests to dine outside
  3. A large outdoor space without easy access to a driveway or road is provided for children to play
  4. Sufficient space is allocated for rubbish bins and general storage


​​The location and design of the primary outdoor space is important to the functioning of the home as a whole.

​The space should maximise direct sun exposure, take advantage of prominent views, provide adequate protection from the prevailing wind, and connect directly and conveniently to the main living area within the house.
Outdoor spaces should allow for a range of different uses in reasonable privacy, including outdoor dining, informal recreation, clothes drying, bin storage and other service functions.

The design and location of the building can make spaces more private. It is good design practice to take note of the neighbouring houses, including their views and the location of their outdoor areas, and to respond accordingly.​

Better Design Practice

En​sure the primary outdoor space is located to receive sun during the times when it is most likely to be used.
The location and orientation of the outdoor space, as well as the placement of the building, all impact on the amount of direct sunlight the space will receive. The changing angle of the sun throughout the year should be considered to ensure the space receives as much sunlight as possible throughout the year.

Locate ​​private outdoor space behind the house, or in a location which is not directly overlooked by neighbouring properties.
If this private outdoor space is located on the side boundary, consider the potential impact on neighbours. Use screening and noise insulation solutions where appropriate.

Design outdoor spaces for a range of uses, and take advantage of different climatic conditions throughout the day and at different times of the year.
Outdoor spaces should be suitable for a range of different functions. These spaces should be designed to allow the use of these spaces for the widest period of time possible during the year. ​

Ensure at least one outdoor space is large enough for the house occupants and guests to sit outside while dini​ng.
Ideally, this space should be directly accessible from the living room, dining room or kitchen.

Consider ​​​small spaces as ‘outdoor rooms’.
These spaces could have defined walls, services and shelter, as well as views out and connections to the house and other spaces.

Provide ​​a secure area for children to play, without access to driveways or the road. 
Children need a space which is large enough to play, whilst also being free from obstruction and without clear access to a driveway or road.

Ensure suffi​cient space for rubbish bins and storage.
Rubbish bins and general storage areas are often overlooked when designing outdoor spaces. Ensure these areas are not visible from the street and use screening or landscaping where appropriate.​

Rules of Thumb

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