Explaining the Ratio of Flexibility and Spatial Organization in Housing with Space Syntax Method; Case Study: Atisaz, Mahan, and Hormozan Residential Complexes

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Architecture, Kish International Branch, Islamic Azad University, Kish Island, Iran.

2 Department of Architecture, South Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran (Corresponding Author).

3 Department of Architecture, Central Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran.


Architectural spaces with the capability of spatial organization and internal transformations can respond to a greater number of their users' needs at different times and thus provide more desirable performance than single-functional spaces. The necessity to access this ability is one of the subcategories of flexibility in housing as a contemplative subject. The purpose of this research is to provide an analytical model in relation to recognizing the space syntax method and using its indicators to measure flexibility in housing. Residential complexes in Tehran city are evaluated as a research society. In order to better express the problem, this research attempts to answer the question of how to use the indicators of the space syntax method to measure flexibility in housing. The research method in the present study will be of mixed type and its performance method will be based on computer simulation. The information-gathering method is based on the library study, and also the field survey includes using available information and observation. The information-gathering tool includes cognitive maps, noting, coding, and testing for the space syntax method through the Depthmap software. The information analysis method in space syntax is done through five components of connectivity, integration, choice, control, and depth. Flexibility is also examined based on the concepts of multi-functional space, seasonal and daily displacement, and segregation and aggregation. The results show that the spatial organization in residential complexes in Tehran city is based on the connection of the kitchen space with the living, dining, and catering spaces. Accordingly, the most connectivity, integration, and control, as well as the least depth, take place between them, which has led to the increased flexibility of spaces in relation to various activities. However, bedrooms are just a place to do a specific activity and rest, which confirms the reduction of their flexibility.


Abbaszadeh, S., Kalani Moghadam, M., & Saadatian, O. (2013). Analyzing a Proper Flexible and Adaptable Pattern for Promoting the Housing Quality in Iran. Design and Built, 6(1), 1-11. http://spaj.ukm.my/jsb/index.php/jdb/article/view/91
Albostan, D. (2009). Flexibility in Multi-Residential Housing Projects: Three Innovative Cases from Turkey. Master Thesis. Department of Architecture. Graduate School of Natural and Applied Sciences. Middle East Technical University. http://open.metu.edu.tr/bitstream/handle/11511/18698/index.pdf?sequence=1
Beisi, J. (1995). Adaptable Housing or Adaptable People? Experience in Switzerland Gives a New Answer to the Questions of Housing Adaptability. Architecture and Behaviour, 11(2), 139-162. http://comportements.ch/en/architecture-behaviour-journal
Cellucci, C., & Di Sivo, M. (2015). The Flexible Housing: Criteria and Strategies for Implementation of the Flexibility. Civil Engineering and Architecture, 9(7), 845-852. https://doi.org/10.17265/1934-7359/2015.07.011
Ching, F. D. K. (2018). Architecture: Form, Space, and Order (Translated by Zohreh Gharagozloo). Tehran: University of Tehran.
Eghbali, S. R., & Hessari, P. (2013). Modular Approach and Prefabrication in Flexible Housing. Housing and Rural Environment, 32(143), 53-68. http://jhre.ir/article-1-360-en.html
Einifar, A. (2003). A Model for Flexibility Analysis in Iranian Traditional Housing. Fine Arts, 13(13), 64-77. http://journals.ut.ac.ir/article_10660.html?lang=en 
Estaji, H. (2017). A Review of Flexibility and Adaptability in Housing Design. Contemporary Architecture, 4(2), 37-49. http://the-new-arch.net/index.php/journal/article/view/48
Friedman, A. (2001). The Grow Home. Montreal and Kingston: Mcgill-Queen’s University.
Galfetti, G. G. (1997). Model Apartments: Experimental Domestic Cells. Barcelona: Gustavo Gili.
Ghafourian, M. (2018). Identification of Flexible Types in Designing Iranian Apartment Housing. Iranian Architecture and Urbanism, 9(15), 63-73. http://isau.ir/article_68580.html
Ghafourian, M., & Aghaei, S. (2016). Flexibility Criteria for Design of Apartment Housing in Iran. Soffeh, 26(3), 41-64. http://soffeh.sbu.ac.ir/article_100320.html?lang=en
Gharavi Alkhansari, M. (2018). Strategies for Flexibility in Housing in Response to Changing Family Patterns. Soffeh, 28(3), 27-49. https://soffeh.sbu.ac.ir/article_100442.html?lang=en
Gharavi Alkhansari, M. (2018). Toward a Convergent Model of Flexibility in Architecture. Architecture and Urbanism, 42(2), 120-133. https://doi.org/10.3846/jau.2018.6241
Habibi, S. M., & Ahari, Z. (1988). Minimal Housing. Tehran: Ministry of Housing and Urban Development.
Habraken, N. J. (1998). The Structure of the Ordinary: Form and Control in the Built Environment. Cambridge: Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Heidari, T., Arian Mehr, A., & Karimian Shamsabadi, M. (2018). Architecture of Residential Complexes and Flexible Housing in Iran with Emphasis on Adaptability. Urban Management, 17(50), 257-281. http://ijurm.imo.org.ir/browse.php?a_id=2175&sid=1&slc_lang=en
Hillier, B. (1996). Space is the Machine. Cambridge: Cambridge University.
Hillier, B., & Hanson, J. (1984). The Social Logic of Space. Cambridge: Cambridge University.
Howe, D. A. (1990). The Flexible House Designing for Changing Needs. American Planning Association, 56(1), 69-77. https://doi.org/10.1080/01944369008975746
Jiang, B., Claramunt, C., & Klarqvist, B. (2000). An Integration of Space Syntax into GIS for Modelling Urban Spaces. Applied Earth Observation and Geoinformation, 2(3-4), 161-171. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0303-2434(00)85010-2
Klarqvist, B. (1993). A Space Syntax Glossary. Nordisk Arkitekturforskning, 6(2), 11-12. http://arkitekturforskning.net/na/issue/view/77
Lee, B., Lee, H., & Kim, S. (2003). Typical Plan Types of Flexible Housing Based on the Analysis of Variation Trends. Open Building, 1(1), 45-53.
Madahi, S. M., & Memarian, G. (2017). A Space Syntax Analysis of Vernacular Dwelling Configuration (Case Study: Boshrooyeh City). Housing and Rural Environment, 35(156), 49-66. https://jhre.ir/browse.php?a_code=A-10-1039-3&sid=1&slc_lang=en
Poddubiuk, M. (1983). The Spectre of a Canadian Architecture. Fifth Column, 3(3-4), 2. http://fifthcolumn.library.mcgill.ca/issue/view/13
Priemus, H. (1969). Housing, Creativity, and Adaptation. Paris: Mouton.
Rian, I., & Sassone, M. (2012). Flexible Housing, a Healthy Housing: A Brief Discussion about the Merits of Flexibility in Designing Healthy Accommodation. Inhabiting the Future, 2(2), 1088-1100.
Schneider, T., & Till, J. (2005). Flexible Housing: Opportunities and Limits. Architectural Research Quarterly, 9(2), 157-166. https://doi.org/10.1017/s1359135505000199
Schroeder, U. (1979). Variably Usable Houses and Apartments: Floor Plan Solutions, Adaptable to Family Size, and Lifestyle. Wiesbaden: Bauverlag.
Seo, K. W., & Kim, C. S. (2013). Interpretable Housing for Freedom of the Body: The Next Generation of Flexible Homes. Building Construction and Planning Research, 1(3), 75-81. https://doi.org/10.4236/jbcpr.2013.13011
Son, J. H., Park, H. Y., & Kim, D. B. (2014). Study on Connectedness of Flexible Housing as an Application of Space Syntax. Advanced Materials Research, 1061-1062(1), 1083-1087. https://doi.org/10.4028/www.scientific.net/AMR.1061-1062.1083