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Sustainability 2017, 9(5), 749;

Sustainability Features of Iran’s Vernacular Architecture: A Comparative Study between the Architecture of Hot–Arid and Hot–Arid–Windy Regions

School of Architecture, Fine Arts Faculty, University of Tehran, Tehran 1417466191, Iran
Department of Architecture, Art and Architecture Faculty, University of Zabol, Zabol 9861335856, Iran
Faculty of Architecture, Urbanism and Islamic Art, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Mashhad 9177948974, Iran
Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, Amirkabir University, Tehran 158754413, Iran
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Tan Yigitcanlar
Received: 6 April 2017 / Revised: 23 April 2017 / Accepted: 26 April 2017 / Published: 4 May 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Urban and Rural Development)


Vernacular architecture has evolved over time to reflect and sustainably comply with the environmental and cultural contexts in which it exists. This kind of architecture possesses a variety of original and clever practices and technologies to satisfy various necessities imposed by context. Iran’s vernacular architecture has mastered the art of adaptation to context by developing different architectures in different regions of the country. Despite their different appearances, these architectures follow the same logic in spirit: sustainable adaptation to context. This original research work surveys this logic in two regions, one hot-arid and the other hot-arid-windy, in Iran (represented by the city of Yazd and the region of Sistan, respectively) through a comparative study. This paper studies different elements and techniques of sustainability in these areas, reasons for their existence and the factors that have shaped them into the specific way that they are. The main elements that were studied through this survey include: fabric and orientation, sidewalks, facades, materials, entrances, courtyards, basements and cellars, porches, roofs, wind-catchers, and openings. In conclusion, links that connect different specifications of context to different aspects of construction are discovered and their role in overall character of two region’s architecture is illustrated so they can be used as guidelines for future designs and constructions. View Full-Text
Keywords: sustainability; vernacular architecture; context; adaptation; Iran; Yazd; Sistan sustainability; vernacular architecture; context; adaptation; Iran; Yazd; Sistan

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Sahebzadeh, S.; Heidari, A.; Kamelnia, H.; Baghbani, A. Sustainability Features of Iran’s Vernacular Architecture: A Comparative Study between the Architecture of Hot–Arid and Hot–Arid–Windy Regions. Sustainability 2017, 9, 749.

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