Aisle
Overview
 
An aisle is, in general(common), a space for walking with rows of seats on both sides or with rows of seats on one side and a wall on the other. Aisles can be seen in airplanes, certain types of buildings such as churches, cathedrals, synagogue
Synagogue
A synagogue is a Jewish house of prayer. This use of the Greek term synagogue originates in the Septuagint where it sometimes translates the Hebrew word for assembly, kahal...

s, meeting hall
Hall
In architecture, a hall is fundamentally a relatively large space enclosed by a roof and walls. In the Iron Age, a mead hall was such a simple building and was the residence of a lord and his retainers...

s, parliament
Parliament
A parliament is a legislature, especially in those countries whose system of government is based on the Westminster system modeled after that of the United Kingdom. The name is derived from the French , the action of parler : a parlement is a discussion. The term came to mean a meeting at which...

s and legislature
Legislature
A legislature is a kind of deliberative assembly with the power to pass, amend, and repeal laws. The law created by a legislature is called legislation or statutory law. In addition to enacting laws, legislatures usually have exclusive authority to raise or lower taxes and adopt the budget and...

s, courtroom
Courtroom
A courtroom is the actual enclosed space in which a judge regularly holds court.The schedule of official court proceedings is called a docket; the term is also synonymous with a court's caseload as a whole.-Courtroom design:-United States:...

s, theatres, and in certain types of passenger vehicles.

Aisles can also be seen in shops, warehouse
Warehouse
A warehouse is a commercial building for storage of goods. Warehouses are used by manufacturers, importers, exporters, wholesalers, transport businesses, customs, etc. They are usually large plain buildings in industrial areas of cities and towns. They usually have loading docks to load and unload...

s, and factories
Factory
A factory or manufacturing plant is an industrial building where laborers manufacture goods or supervise machines processing one product into another. Most modern factories have large warehouses or warehouse-like facilities that contain heavy equipment used for assembly line production...

, where rather than seats they have shelving to either side.
Encyclopedia
An aisle is, in general(common), a space for walking with rows of seats on both sides or with rows of seats on one side and a wall on the other. Aisles can be seen in airplanes, certain types of buildings such as churches, cathedrals, synagogue
Synagogue
A synagogue is a Jewish house of prayer. This use of the Greek term synagogue originates in the Septuagint where it sometimes translates the Hebrew word for assembly, kahal...

s, meeting hall
Hall
In architecture, a hall is fundamentally a relatively large space enclosed by a roof and walls. In the Iron Age, a mead hall was such a simple building and was the residence of a lord and his retainers...

s, parliament
Parliament
A parliament is a legislature, especially in those countries whose system of government is based on the Westminster system modeled after that of the United Kingdom. The name is derived from the French , the action of parler : a parlement is a discussion. The term came to mean a meeting at which...

s and legislature
Legislature
A legislature is a kind of deliberative assembly with the power to pass, amend, and repeal laws. The law created by a legislature is called legislation or statutory law. In addition to enacting laws, legislatures usually have exclusive authority to raise or lower taxes and adopt the budget and...

s, courtroom
Courtroom
A courtroom is the actual enclosed space in which a judge regularly holds court.The schedule of official court proceedings is called a docket; the term is also synonymous with a court's caseload as a whole.-Courtroom design:-United States:...

s, theatres, and in certain types of passenger vehicles.

Aisles can also be seen in shops, warehouse
Warehouse
A warehouse is a commercial building for storage of goods. Warehouses are used by manufacturers, importers, exporters, wholesalers, transport businesses, customs, etc. They are usually large plain buildings in industrial areas of cities and towns. They usually have loading docks to load and unload...

s, and factories
Factory
A factory or manufacturing plant is an industrial building where laborers manufacture goods or supervise machines processing one product into another. Most modern factories have large warehouses or warehouse-like facilities that contain heavy equipment used for assembly line production...

, where rather than seats they have shelving to either side. In warehouses and factories aisles may consist of storage pallets and in factories aisles may separate work areas. In health club
Health club
A health club is a place which houses exercise equipment for the purpose of physical exercise.-Main workout area:...

s, exercise equipment
Exercise equipment
An apparatus or device used in any given physical activity for shaping and forming muscle groups for specific areas of the body. A mechanism or machine that is intended to promote health and fitness by using motion with varying degrees of resistance either fixed or adjustable.-Exercise...

 normally is arranged in aisles.

Aisles are distinguished from corridors, hallways, walkway
Walkway
In US English, a walkway is a composite or umbrella term for all engineered surfaces or structures which support the use of trails. These include sidewalks, footbridges, stiles, stairs, ramps, paseos or tunnels...

s, footpaths/pavements (American English sidewalk
Sidewalk
A sidewalk, or pavement, footpath, footway, and sometimes platform, is a path along the side of a road. A sidewalk may accommodate moderate changes in grade and is normally separated from the vehicular section by a curb...

s), trails, paths and (enclosed) "open areas".

Typical physical characteristics

Aisles have certain general physical characteristics:
  • They are virtually always straight, not curved.
  • They are usually fairly long. An open space that had three rows of chairs to the right of it and three to the left generally would not be considered an "aisle".

Width of various types of aisles

  • Theatres, meeting halls, shops, etc., usually have aisles wide enough for 2-3 strangers to walk past each other without feeling uncomfortably close. In such facilities, anything that could comfortably accommodate more than 4 people side-by-side would generally be considered an "open area", rather than an "aisle".
  • Factory work area aisles usually are wide enough for workers to comfortably sit or stand at their work area, while allowing safe and efficient movement of persons, equipment and/or materials.
  • Vehicle aisles usually are quite narrow--wide enough for a large person to carry a suitcase in each hand but not wide enough for two people to pass side-by-side without touching. Usually, even without luggage one person must turn sideways in order for the other one to pass.
  • Warehouse aisles normally are at least 8-10 feet (2.4-3 meters) wide, to allow use of mechanical loading equipment.
  • Wedding aisles are wide enough to allow two people to walk comfortably beside each other and still have space. The width of these aisles varies and is up to those who design the layout of the wedding.

Note that spaces between buildings, e.g., rows of storage sheds, would not be considered "aisles", even if the same amount of separation would be considered an aisle in a warehouse.

Architecture

In architecture
Architecture
Architecture is both the process and product of planning, designing and construction. Architectural works, in the material form of buildings, are often perceived as cultural and political symbols and as works of art...

, an aisle is more specifically the wing of a house, or a lateral division of a large building. The earliest examples of aisles can be found in the Basilica Ulpia
Basilica ulpia
The Basilica Ulpia was an ancient Roman civic building located in the Forum of Trajan. The Basilica Ulpia separates the temple from the main courtyard in the Forum of Trajan with the Trajan's Column to the northwest...

 (basilica of Trajan), which had double aisles on either side of its central area. The church of St. Peter's
St. Peter's Basilica
The Papal Basilica of Saint Peter , officially known in Italian as ' and commonly known as Saint Peter's Basilica, is a Late Renaissance church located within the Vatican City. Saint Peter's Basilica has the largest interior of any Christian church in the world...

 in Rome
Rome
Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...

 has the same number.

Cathedral architecture

In cathedral architecture, an aisle (also known as an isle, yle, or alley) is more specifically a passageway to either side of the nave that is separated from the nave by colonnade
Colonnade
In classical architecture, a colonnade denotes a long sequence of columns joined by their entablature, often free-standing, or part of a building....

s or arcades
Arcade (architecture)
An arcade is a succession of arches, each counterthrusting the next, supported by columns or piers or a covered walk enclosed by a line of such arches on one or both sides. In warmer or wet climates, exterior arcades provide shelter for pedestrians....

, a row of pillars or column
Column
A column or pillar in architecture and structural engineering is a vertical structural element that transmits, through compression, the weight of the structure above to other structural elements below. For the purpose of wind or earthquake engineering, columns may be designed to resist lateral forces...

s. Occasionally aisles stop at the transept
Transept
For the periodical go to The Transept.A transept is a transverse section, of any building, which lies across the main body of the building. In Christian churches, a transept is an area set crosswise to the nave in a cruciform building in Romanesque and Gothic Christian church architecture...

s, but often aisles can be continued around the apse
Apse
In architecture, the apse is a semicircular recess covered with a hemispherical vault or semi-dome...

. Aisles are thus categorized as nave-aisles, transept-aisles or choir-aisles. A semi-circular choir with aisles continued around it, providing access to a series of chapels, is a chevet.

In Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture is a style of architecture that flourished during the high and late medieval period. It evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture....

, the roofs of the aisles are lower than that of the nave, allowing light to enter through clerestory
Clerestory
Clerestory is an architectural term that historically denoted an upper level of a Roman basilica or of the nave of a Romanesque or Gothic church, the walls of which rise above the rooflines of the lower aisles and are pierced with windows. In modern usage, clerestory refers to any high windows...

 windows. In Romanesque architecture
Romanesque architecture
Romanesque architecture is an architectural style of Medieval Europe characterised by semi-circular arches. There is no consensus for the beginning date of the Romanesque architecture, with proposals ranging from the 6th to the 10th century. It developed in the 12th century into the Gothic style,...

, however, the roofs are at roughly equal heights, with those of the aisle being only slightly lower than that of the nave. In Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

, churches where the roofs of the aisles and nave are the same height, such as St. Stephen's, Vienna
Stephansdom
St. Stephen's Cathedral is the mother church of the Archdiocese of Vienna and the seat of the Archbishop of Vienna, Christoph Cardinal Schönborn, OP...

, the Wiesenkirche at Soest
Soest, Germany
Soest is a town in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It is the capital of the Soest district. After Lippstadt, a neighbouring town, Soest is the second biggest town in its district.-Geography:...

, St. Martin's, Landshut, and the Frauenkirche
Munich Frauenkirche
The Frauenkirche is a church in the Bavarian city of Munich that serves as the cathedral of the Archdiocese of Munich and Freising and seat of its Archbishop. It is a landmark and is considered a symbol of the Bavarian capital city.The church towers are widely visible because of local height...

 (Church of Our Lady) in Munich
Munich
Munich The city's motto is "" . Before 2006, it was "Weltstadt mit Herz" . Its native name, , is derived from the Old High German Munichen, meaning "by the monks' place". The city's name derives from the monks of the Benedictine order who founded the city; hence the monk depicted on the city's coat...

 are known as Hallenkirchen
Hall church
A hall church is a church with nave and side aisles of approximately equal height, often united under a single immense roof. The term was first coined in the mid-19th century by the pioneering German art historian Wilhelm Lübke....

.

Confusingly when discussing overall design, architectural historians include the central vessel in the number of aisles. Thus the original St Peter's Basilica in Rome
Rome
Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...

, Milan Cathedral
Duomo di Milano
Milan Cathedral is the cathedral church of Milan, Italy. Dedicated to Santa Maria Nascente , it is the seat of the Archbishop of Milan, currently Cardinal Angelo Scola....

, Amiens Cathedral
Amiens Cathedral
The Cathedral of Our Lady of Amiens , or simply Amiens Cathedral, is a Roman Catholic cathedral and seat of the Bishop of Amiens...

, Antwerp Cathedral
Cathedral of Our Lady, Antwerp
The Cathedral of Our Lady is a Roman Catholic cathedral in Antwerp, Belgium. Today's see of the Diocese of Antwerp was started in 1352 and, although the first stage of construction was ended in 1521, has never been 'completed'. In Gothic style, its architects were Jan and Pieter Appelmans...

 and Notre Dame de Paris
Notre Dame de Paris
Notre Dame de Paris , also known as Notre Dame Cathedral, is a Gothic, Roman Catholic cathedral on the eastern half of the Île de la Cité in the fourth arrondissement of Paris, France. It is the cathedral of the Catholic Archdiocese of Paris: that is, it is the church that contains the cathedra of...

 are all described as having five aisles, meaning they have two side aisles either side of the central nave. In the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

, cathedrals generally only have one aisle on each side, with Chichester Cathedral
Chichester Cathedral
The Cathedral Church of the Holy Trinity, otherwise called Chichester Cathedral, is the seat of the Anglican Bishop of Chichester. It is located in Chichester, in Sussex, England...

 and Elgin Cathedral
Elgin Cathedral
Elgin Cathedral, dedicated to the Holy Trinity, sometimes referred to as The Lantern of the North is a historic ruin in Elgin, Moray, north-east Scotland. It was established in 1224 on an area of ground granted by Alexander II that was close to the River Lossie and outside of the burgh of...

 being the only two exceptions.

Supermarkets and retail stores

In supermarket
Supermarket
A supermarket, a form of grocery store, is a self-service store offering a wide variety of food and household merchandise, organized into departments...

s there are two types of aisles, food aisles and checkout aisles.

Food aisles are where goods are displayed. At the end of food aisles may be found crown end displays, where high-margin
Profit margin
Profit margin, net margin, net profit margin or net profit ratio all refer to a measure of profitability. It is calculated by finding the net profit as a percentage of the revenue.Net profit Margin = x100...

 goods are displayed for impulse purchase.

In retail stores that do not primarily sell food, aisles containing products would be referred to either generically as merchandise aisles, or by the particular products contained in the aisle, e.g., "the gardening aisle", "the sports equipment aisle".

Checkout aisles contain cash register
Cash register
A cash register or till is a mechanical or electronic device for calculating and recording sales transactions, and an attached cash drawer for storing cash...

s at which customers make their purchases. Regardless of the type of merchandise the establishment sells, it is common to display a range of "impulse buy" items along the checkout aisle, such as cold beverages, magazines, and candy.

Signage

For customer convenience, supermarkets and retail stores commonly number the aisles and have signs indicating both the aisle number and the types of products displayed in that aisle.

Churches, courtrooms, legislatures, and meeting halls may identify individual rows, seats or sections but do not normally assign aisle numbers or display signs regarding aisles.

Libraries

Libraries are commonly divided into several areas:
  • Circulation desk
  • Collections, areas where materials are grouped, e.g., Children's Collection. This may include book shelves, manuscripts, photos, etc.
  • The "stacks", where books are shelved
  • The Reference Room where materials with limited circulation are stored
  • Public reading areas containing seats and desks


The spaces between rows of book shelves in the "stacks" area are called aisles and desks in the reading area are frequently arranged in rows with aisles.

Indoor theatres and concert halls

Films, stage plays and musical concerts ordinarily are presented in a darkened facility so the audience can see the presentation better. To improve safety, often the edges of the aisles in such facilities are marked with a row of small lights. The markers frequently are strings of light-emitting diode
Light-emitting diode
A light-emitting diode is a semiconductor light source. LEDs are used as indicator lamps in many devices and are increasingly used for other lighting...

s (LEDs) because LEDs are durable, have low power consumption and use low voltages that are not subject to electrical codes
National Electrical Code (US)
The National Electrical Code , or NFPA 70, is a regionally adoptable standard for the safe installation of electrical wiring and equipment...

. To provide a higher level of light focused downward, lighting fixtures referred to as luminaries are often built into the side of the seat facing the aisle.

Stadiums and outdoor arenas

Sport stadiums and outdoor arenas frequently have several types of aisles, including aisles to purchase tickets for events, aisles to enter the main event area and aisles to go to seating. Stadium seating routinely is separated into sections by aisles. Seating rows are accessed by stair steps. To promote safety, aisles commonly are divided by a handrail in the middle of the aisle.

Stables

In stables there is a stable aisle down the centre with individual stalls facing the aisle. In the diagram in "Aisles and sections" below, the stable aisle would the centre section marked "not considered an aisle", and the various boxes marked "AISLE 1a", etc., would be the stalls, with the animals facing into the aisle so they can see each other.

Safety and regulatory considerations

National and local government regulations require a minimum width for aisles in various building types. Regulatory agencies frequently inspect buildings, vehicles, etc., to enforce regulations requiring that aisles not be restricted. Inspectors have imposed fines for blocking or restricting passage when boxes or folding chairs are stored in aisles, for example. Insurance companies frequently have safety inspectors to examine the premises, both to determine whether insureds are complying with the insurer's requirements for coverage and to look for any practices that could lead to injury or property damage, including restricting passage in aisles.

The Americans with Disabilities Act sets certain standards for building access and other design considerations in all new construction and major renovations in the U.S. An architectural barrier is any feature that makes access or use of a building difficult, unreasonably dangerous or impossible. This can include aisles that are too narrow for easy access by a wheelchair
Wheelchair
A wheelchair is a chair with wheels, designed to be a replacement for walking. The device comes in variations where it is propelled by motors or by the seated occupant turning the rear wheels by hand. Often there are handles behind the seat for someone else to do the pushing...

. Often, the only way to get from a row of chairs, shelves, workstations, etc., to an exit is by an aisle. Over the years, many deaths and serious injuries have occurred due to fire, inhalation of smoke or noxious fumes, etc., because blocked or partially blocked aisles prevented persons from promptly leaving a dangerous area.

Regulations applicable to public carriers transporting passengers often require aisles to be completely clear in vehicles, such as airlines, buses and trains. Many insurance
Insurance
In law and economics, insurance is a form of risk management primarily used to hedge against the risk of a contingent, uncertain loss. Insurance is defined as the equitable transfer of the risk of a loss, from one entity to another, in exchange for payment. An insurer is a company selling the...

 companies have requirements regarding minimum aisle width, unrestricted aisles and easy access to exits, and will refuse to insure companies that do not meet their requirements or will increase the premiums on companies that frequently violate the requirements.

See also

  • Cathedral diagram
    Cathedral diagram
    In Western ecclesiastical architecture, a cathedral diagram is a floor plan showing the sections of walls and piers, giving an idea of the profiles of their columns and ribbing. Light double lines in perimeter walls indicate glazed windows. Dashed lines show the ribs of the vaulting overhead...

  • Soutra Aisle
    Soutra Aisle
    Soutra Aisle, just within the Scottish Borders, not far from Fala, is the remains of the House of the Holy Trinity, a church that was part of a complex comprising a hospital and a friary...

  • Wedding
    Wedding
    A wedding is the ceremony in which two people are united in marriage or a similar institution. Wedding traditions and customs vary greatly between cultures, ethnic groups, religions, countries, and social classes...

     ("walking down the aisle")
  • Safety
    Safety
    Safety is the state of being "safe" , the condition of being protected against physical, social, spiritual, financial, political, emotional, occupational, psychological, educational or other types or consequences of failure, damage, error, accidents, harm or any other event which could be...

  • Building design
    Building design
    Building design refers to the broadly based architectural, engineering and technical applications to the design of buildings. All building projects require the services of a building designer, typically a licensed architect or structural engineer...

  • List of basic architectural topics

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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