• timeline analysis;
  • available safe egress time (ASET);
  • required safe egress time (RSET);
  • green railway station;
  • computational fluid dynamics


A green railway station adopting natural ventilation was built in Hong Kong to promote sustainable architectural design. Similar to many other green or sustainable projects, such design failed to comply with the local fire safety codes. There are potential fire hazards due to the adopted green features. Better ventilation provision would supply more air to burn the combustibles in case of fire. Performance-based design was applied using the timeline analysis to determine the fire safety provisions. In this paper, fire simulations were carried out to predict the available safe egress time (ASET) under low design fires with smoke toxicity including only the carbon monoxide concentration. Evacuation simulations were conducted to predict the required safe egress time (RSET) under low passenger loadings. Studies on human behaviour under big fires and heavy passenger loadings were not included. Problems to be encountered in this green railway station using the timeline analysis will be pointed out in this paper. ASET was estimated by computational fluid dynamics with bigger fires resulted from the green features. RSET was estimated by evacuation software under local passenger loadings. The results indicated that ASET are less than RSET under big fires with heavy passenger loadings. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.