Practice Exam Q Choice Poor Wording

Question outlines a school located in a temperate climate zone and requires to have solar heat gain and views to adjacent pond. What building shape best meets the requirements?

Correct Answer: Arc-shape on north side of pond

My Wrong Answer: “Rectangular facing the pond on south side”. The explanation states the building should be located on north side of pond to capture the views, and though I agree, I believe the choice is deceptive in making you believe the pond is to the south of the building, not the other way around.

In addition, per Building Codes Illustrated, Solar Radiation 1.15, Elongating the form of a building along the east-west axis maximizes south-facing walls is preferred, thus the rectangular logic. Should I expect curveballs like this from NCARB, or am I overthinking it?

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Hi @coachlizschneider do you mind helping @fdeluna5

@fdeluna5 If you could tell me which Form of the practice exam this question can be found on I may be able to get you a more specific answer.

Based on the information that you provided, hopefully I can offer some clarity.

When it comes to elongating the building in the east west direction, you’re right that is preferred in a temperate climate. However, that doesn’t mean that the building needs to be purely rectangular in shape. Both your answer and the given answer provide an elongated building in the east west direction.

As for the placement of the building, without seeing the full site it is difficult to decide whether or not the building should be placed to the north or the south of the pond. However, by placing it to the north you would potentially be able to capture some of the cool breezes coming off of the pond in the summer to mitigate the heat gain that would be less desirable in the summer.

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