Stage 3: Sector Maps

Sector Maps have long been used to identify and map the exterior and interior influences on a site.  As part of the basemap  it graphically represents the elements needed for consideration when making design decisions. Most are directional, like wind, sun, and sight lines; moving through the site. Others are in proximity to the site, like freeway noise.  All are design drivers affecting the strategies in the final design.

For developing the sector map, use a sketch pad for taking notes. Then art them in the digital file for the title block and other printed pieces. Most of the data comes from the site assessment table. Do that first, then create the sector map. Other information will come from the client interview and designer’s (you) observations.

Many energetic and  dynamic characteristics can be represented on a sector map.  Not only things entering the site like a neighbors run-off and prevailing winds, but things created on or flowing off the site. Think of rain water flow. What is the source of fluids (hint) and materials on the site and where do they move?

Where does the organic material  move now?  Off site? Does the slope of the site cause water to leave in a certain direction? These are all arrows and gradients that can be represented on the sector map for reminders and design drivers when building the solutions.

The center may be the house, or a barn. The sector map can be used in macro form for the entire site, then used for specific areas.  Place the macro sector map on the Adobe Illustrator® title block as seen the the template or move it as needed. Saved as a PDF it can be incorporated into most documents.