NCARB DEMO EXAM QUESTION

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    Dominic Blindert

    You are not alone, many of us feel the same pain of 2/3. I am much less confident on the second question but I will share my rationale nonetheless.

    • A northeast region of the U.S. suggests a cold weather (winter) climate. That being said, evergreens would give you the best protection from typical winter winds prevailing from the north-northwest. Furthermore, deciduous trees placed on the south would help shade the home during warm, summer months while dropping their leaves and allowing sunlight to penetrate during the winter.

     

    • "Foundation drainage around a building perimeter" is a gimme as it's absolutely necessary for any structure in any given climate. Initially, I see two incorrect answers that I believe can be removed: “An underground cistern…” & “Onsite graywater treatment” as the question does not state anything about collecting, storing, harvesting, or re-using the runoff. Lastly, my rationale for removing “A constructed stormwater wetland planted with native vegetation” is simply based on size. The question states that it is a SMALL land parcel, and a constructed wetland would likely require 10+ acres for minimum drainage.

    Best of luck on your exam.

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    Shreya Agarwal (Edited )

    Hi Dominic, thank you so much for your response. Last night, I actually found a post that said most demo exam answers can be found in the 5.0 Handbook. I thought these were PA questions so I didn't bother checking the other sections. But after reading that post, I looked and saw these questions are from the PPD section! 

    https://are5community.ncarb.org/hc/en-us/community/posts/360051418234-NEW-DEMO-EXAM-SCORE

    Your first response align's with the handbook's rationale. I was thinking the same thing, my only confusion was that they said the northeast which I believe to be a cold climate. So for solar optimization, I was unsure whether that meant you would want all the summer sun as well. But I think the general rule of thumb is you need some sort of shading on the south in the summer in any climate. 

    Your second answer is different from the Handbook answer. Their conclusions were "an underground cistern, fed from rainwater collection on the shopping center roof", "porous asphalt in the parking lot" and "diversion ditches between adjacent rows of parking spaces". So just like you I eliminated "onsite greywater treatment" immediately and "a constructed wetland" since it doesn't make sense for this scale/climate. However, I was uncertain between the foundation drainage or cistern. I also felt like the foundation drainage was an obvious correct answer at first but apparently "foundation drainage is not related to stormwater management" and a cistern is. I'm not sure I agree with that statement and like you said, and I feel like cisterns would also generally be used for a larger site. And just from some quick research, it seems that cisterns are typically used in warm/hot arid region where water is scarce not a wet one, and like you said - the question gives no information on whether rainwater needs to be harvested.

    I feel like half the time the way NCARB words these questions is so terrible and confusing, and often contradicts what primary resources say. These exams seem to become about answering exactly according to NCARB ideology instead of common sense....

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    Rebekka O'Melia

    Yes, those answers are correct!  The Northeast gets most of its wind from the West (think of a map of the USA - air moves from the West Coast across to the East, and then up towards Nova Scotia).  I grew up in a house in the Northeast with a water view on the West side (no tress so we could see the view).  We also had a big wood Anderson bow window facing the water.  We were freezing all winter with the wind...  And in Summer having deciduous trees on the South, even in the North, is advisable because it's still 80+ degrees.

    The stormwater question is a tricky one, but you found the correct answer.  Just read the questions carefully...  Remember stormwater is different than graywater and perimeter drainage.

    Good luck and keep studying!

     

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