Building Material Preferences in Warm-Humid and Hot-Dry Climates in Ghana
This paper explores building materials preferences in the warm-humid and hot-dry climates in Ghana. Using a combination of closed and open-ended questionnaires, a total of 1281 participants (473 adults and 808 youth) were recruited in Ghana in a two-month survey in Kumasi and Tamale representing the warm-humid and hot-dry climates respectively. Sampling was purposive. The sample elements were chosen because they typically represented the communities of our case studies. Through hypothesis testing, the Pearson Chi-square results indicate a significant positive association between aesthetics and study areas (χ2 =155.65; df =4; N =1278; p < 0.05) with an asymptotic significance level of 0. 000 (p = 0. 0005). The findings indicate aesthetics generally appear to be major considerations instead of climatic considerations in the choice of building materials in Kumasi and Tamale. This paper concludes that, the preference for building materials in Ghana points to neglect of climatic considerations due to aesthetics influences and apparent lack of enforcement of building rules and regulations. This paper recommends a review of the National Building Regulations-Legislative Instruments 1630 to reflect current trends in architecture and building developments.
Keywords: Aesthetics, Building materials, Preference, Tropical climates, Ghana