An important consideration in the building of your projects is in the roofline of your project. The influence of the roof design on architecture in Kenya is so strong such that it has major influence on the outlook of the building. Your roof design will either be a good one or it will be terrible dependent on its design. The roof definitely has its own appeal based on its design, and is probably the most visible element of the building due to its height. Thus, it is a key part of the design of the building, and it’s morphology will be a key element to achieve interest in the building’s appeal.

Good architecture in Kenya calls for the building’s roof to be functional

kenyan architecture - roof design of a bungalowOne of the foremost considerations about a building’s roof is the fact that it needs to be functional. A building’s key function is offering protection from the elements of nature, providing vertical enclosure from the effects of rain, sun and dust. The roof also secures the upper plane of the building from any intrusion from above, providing a secure barrier to the overhead plane from any intrusion above. The roof can also serve as a functional space that one can enjoy by turning it into a roof garden or a space that is open to sky.

This particular use of the roof is one that calls for plenty of interest from the users of the space and can be used as a means of getting good interest from people especially in the realm of real estate development, as the ability to relax on one’s roof top and turning that into a habitable space can be a major selling point. The roof terrace is another way within which someone can make use of their home. Doing a waterproof slab above the highest floor of the building and finishing it with a comfortable weatherproof finish instantly renders it usable as a space where one can place furniture and relax. In coastal areas especially, this can be an interesting use of the overhead plane of the roof space as a place where residents can go up to to enjoy a bit of evening breeze.

Good Kenyan architecture calls for a balanced building form

When one looks at the proportions of the roof plane as well as the impact it has in terms of what you see when you look at a building, it does play a major role. The eye is automatically drawn to examine a building from its base all the way to its apex, which is the roof plane where the building terminates. Even when you look at a building with a flat roof where there is no apparent form at the top of a building, the way the terminal line is drawn at the top of the building is a big part of the form of the building.
It is of interest to the architect therefore to properly define the top of their building in a manner that the building’s roof makes sense from a design perspective, as well as from a functional perspective. The roof causes the building to take a particular architectural feel when one looks at the kind of roof designs that characterize a type of architectural age.

For example, if one wanted to create a building structure that has a style from a particular place or era in time, doing roof designs in a particular way will help the building read like it is of that particular age. A good example is if you would like to create a building with islamic influences, you can incorporate elements such as domes and flat roofs with parapet walls having saracenic niches to create that character. The use of flat roofs defined with wide eaves and overhangs is very characteristic of modern contemporary buildings which have these kind of building structures on them. Once these are coupled with brise soleil above windows or to create a touch of sunshade drama along the face of the building, a good level of contemporary character would be automatically created along the face of the building at that level.

So what type of roof design should I use where to get the best result?

By creating a building structure that is responsive to a given building type, one can make decisions regarding the type of roof finishes to employ on their property. The roof finishes are often determined by the pitch of the roof, more due to functional considerations than anything else. Roof pitches less than 15 degrees call for roof finishes that are intrinsic and continuous, such as membrane roofs or roof sheets that can be connected together with few intervening joints. This way, you would be able to achieve a higher degree of waterproofing around the entire area of the roof. These kind of continuous roofs can be further reinforced using a hard layer of tiling above the roof plane which would serve to protect the continuous membrane below from physical damage through which water can penetrate later on.

However giving the roof better definition by having a steep pitched roof gives opportunity for the roof to be used as a stronger aesthetic element. The proportion of roof that has a higher proportion of the building that is visible to the external areas is a major way within which the building can have a good level of aesthetic appeal added to it. Aesthetically pleasing finishes such as asphalt shingles, clay roof tiles or stone coated zinc tiles can be given their own level of prominence on a building’s structure, depending on the way they have been constructed.

Before you build that architecture in Kenya, get your roof well designed

Whatever type of building you are constructing, it is important that you get to have a good roof design before embarking on your construction, such that you are able to do a good job in creating a beautiful architectural masterpiece. Have you come up with the design of your building yet? Let us know what your thoughts are towards creating good architecture in Kenya having interesting roof design.