Architectural and Engineering Glossary



Of an elevator,escalator,etc.,the vertical distance between the bottom terminal landing and the top terminal landing.

Traveler,traveler Curtain

On the stage of a theater,a curtain that closes the proscenium when drawn.

Traveling Cable

A cable,made up of electric conductors,which provides an electric connection between an elevator or dumbwaiter car and a fixed electrical outlet in the hoistway.

Traveling Crane

A tower crane which is mounted on crawlers,rubber tires,or rails.

Traveling Form

Same as slipform.


1.A screen,railing,or other barrier across an opening to allow passage from one place to another by an official or dignitary,but to discourage unauthorized entry.2.Same as survey traverse.


A variety of limestone deposited by springs;usually banded;commonly coarsely cellular;used as building stone,esp.for interior facing and flooring;some varieties are sold as marble in the building trade.


Having a series of transverse divisions or bays,as in a ceiling.

Tray Ceiling

Under a gabled roof,a horizontal ceiling constructed part of the way up toward the ridge.

Tray Rail

See food tray rail.


See vinette.

Treacle Molding

A rounded molding or nosing that is deeply undercut,upward to a groove that acts as a drip to discharge rainwater.


The horizontal surface of a step;often has a rounded edge that extends beyond the upright face of the riser below it.

Tread Length

The dimension of a tread measured perpendicular to the normal line of travel on a stair.

Tread Plate

A floor plate which is fabricated of metal,e.g.aluminum.

Tread Return

In an open stair,the continuation of the horizontal rounded edge of the tread,beyond the stair stringer.

Tread Run

The horizontal distance between two consecutive risers or,on an open-riser stair,the horizontal distance between nosings or the outer edges of successive treads,all measured perpendicular to the front edges of the nosings or treads. 

Tread Width

The dimension of a tread (measured along the normal line of travel of the stair)plus the projection of the nosing,if any.

Treated Lumber

Lumber that has been treated with a preservative,1 according to standards of the ASTM, the American Wood Preservers Association (AWPA),or a similar organization.

Treated Wood

1.See fire-retardant wood.2.Wood which has been subjected to a wood preservative.

Treble Sash

A window having three vertically sliding sashes,one above the other,each of which closes a different part of the window;once used in large houses having very high ceilings;compare with three-part window.


Old English term for grees.

Tree Belt

A strip between the sidewalk and curb of a road,planted with grass and sometimes with shade trees.

Tree Grate

Surrounding a tree trunk set in pavement,a metal grille which is flush with the pavement.


An attachment for the front of a tractor consisting of metal bars and a cutting blade;used in clearing land of small trees,bushes,and the like.


In an opening,a threelobed pattern separated by cusps;see foil.

Trefoil Arch

An arch whose inner surface is struck from three centers;the configuration of the arch is determined by the position of the centers of curvature and radii of curvature of the arcs that are joined.


A trellis support for vines or espaliers.


Same as treillage.


1.An open grating or latticework,of either metal or wood.2.An arbor or framework for the support of vines;a treillage.

Trellis Molding,trellice Molding

An ornament,used in buildings of the Norman style,consisting of a series of overlapping zigzag lines which produce a trellis-like appearance.

Trellis Window

A casement window,fixed or hinged,with glazing bars set diagonally to suggest a trellis;also called a lattice window.


A pipe or tube through which concrete is deposited under water,having at its upper end a hopper for filling and a bail by means of which the assembly can be handled by a derrick.

Tremie Concrete

Concrete placed by means of a tremie.

Tremie Seal

Concrete placed under water by means of a tremie to seal a cofferdam or caisson so that water may be pumped out.


Same as treenail.

Trench Box,trench Shield

A heavily braced box of wood or steel which can be moved along a trench bottom as excavation and pipe laying proceed;used where the trenches are deep and not sheathed;also used in lieu of other methods of sheathing and shoring for shallow excavations where the sides of the shield can extend from the trench bottom to the ground surface.

Trench Brace

A device,usually adjustable in length,for supporting sheeting or other materials used to prevent collapse of the sidewalls of a ditch or trench.

Trench Duct

A metal trough buried in a concrete floor and having removable cover plates that are level with the top of the floor;used to carry electric conductors.

Trench Jack

A screw jack or hydraulic jack used as cross bracing in a trench shoring system.

Trench Shield

A shoring system composed of steel plates and braces which are welded or bolted together;the shoring system supports the walls of a trench from the ground level down to the bottom of the trench;can be moved along as the work progresses.


In medieval architecture and derivatives,a narrow vestibule or passageway.

Trestle Ladder

A portable ladder which is self-supporting,but not adjustable in length;consists of two sections which are hinged at the top so as to form equal angles with the base.


See trave.

Trial Batch

Of concrete,a batch which is prepared to establish or check the proportions of the constituents.

Trial Pit

A small-diameter hole in the ground,excavated to investigate the nature of the soil and to determine the distance to bedrock.

Triangular Arch

1.An arch often formed by two large diagonal stones that mutually support each other to span an opening;also called a miter arch.2.A Mayan arch.

Triangular Dormer

A dormer having a triangularly shaped gable roof.

Triangular Fret Molding

See dovetail molding. 

Triangular Pediment

A pediment having a horizontal cornice and slanting sides that meet in a point at the top so as to form a triangle;also called an angular pediment.