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Auditoriums in Architecture
Auditoriums in Architecture 

The Auditorium space types are areas for large meetings, presentations, and performances. Auditorium space type facilities may include assembly halls, exhibit halls, auditoriums, and theaters.Auditorium spaces are designed to accommodate large audiences so they tend to have wide spans and are multiple-stories high in order to accommodate seating, sightline, and acoustical requirements.

Typical features of Auditorium space types include :

  • Sloped Floors: Sloped floors, with level terraces for each row of seating, help provide the proper sightlines from the audience to the stage. 
  • Fixed Seats: Fixed seats with tilting upholstered seat and back, integral arm and tablet arm are provided with articulated back for maximum occupant passage space between rows. 
  • Special Lighting: Dramatic lighting systems include front lighting, foot lighting, spot lights, follow spot lights, beam lights, and flood lights, and a projection room/booth with manual and programmable lighting controls, and space for the spot light operator space.
  • Occupancy: Occupancy Group Classification is Assembly A1 or A3 as per IBC, with sprinkler protected construction, and GSA Acoustical Class A space requiring special acoustical design. 
  • Special Acoustical Design: Quality acoustical characteristics are important in Auditorium spaces so that performances and presentations can be clearly heard and understood. For performance spaces and general presentation spaces, recommended noise criteria (NC) rating ranges from NC-20 to NC-30; recommended sound transmission class (STC) rating ranges from STC 40 to STC 50. 
  • Increased Cooling Capacity: Heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems for Auditorium spaces are sized and zoned to accommodate varying internal loads, which are a function of audience sizes, performance lighting loads, and projection equipment. Particularly, air handling units (AHUs) with increased cooling capacity should be zoned separately for the auditorium, lobby, projection spaces, stage areas, and audience seating areas. 
  • Fire and Life Safety: Proper notification systems, lighting, and signage are required to facilitate safe and speedy evacuations during an emergency in the Auditorium spaces.

For Details :
Three important requirements of auditorium 

  • Sightlines 
  • Acoustic requirements for room shaping and isolation, 
  • Accessibility and egress.  

Sightlines ensure that every seat has an unobstructed line of sight to the performance, studying the distance and viewing angles from the most extreme seats both near and far. Again, the performance type informs the criteria for sightlines. While it is critical to be able to see a dancer’s feet at the very edge of the stage, the sightline criteria of an orchestra hall can be less rigid. 

The geometry of the room should be designed to naturally enhance the acoustics of the room, while also taking variable and enhanced acoustic materials like reflectors and applied wall materials into consideration. 

Lastly, code requirements for egress and accessibility will determine the required aisle and path widths throughout the assembly space, which will be based primarily on the capacity of the auditorium.

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