Based on global warming, decline of existing energy resources, exponential population growth, increasing geopolitical instabilities which are the result of uncertainty of the future energy supply, together with the fact that buildings represent about 40% of total energy consumption worldwide leads to a conclusion that a good architecture is not possible without a good energy concept.


    The buildings represent the bigger part of one of the biggest problem of our society - fair distribution of available resources. Therefore architecture can be a big part of the solution. Never before in the history of our civilization architecture had such a chance to gain one of the central roles in the society. Good architecture is always representing the expression of the cultural values, priorities and hopes of a society. Now it can produce a physical response for the existential challenges.


    A sustainable development by definition cannot get along with the decay in architectural quality of our built environment. A building with low architectural quality and good energy concept is not an actual benefit for a sustainable future. The objective of research and teaching at the Institute is the maximization of energy performance of buildings and cities, and the development of architectural and urban projects through form and structure optimization toward energy efficiency.

  • TEAM

    Head of the Institute

    Brian Cody


    Office hours

    Monday - Friday, 09:00 - 12:00

    consultation-hour - wednesday 11:00 - 12:00

    consultation-hour - friday 11:00 - 12:00

    Project Assistant/Lector

    Sebastian Sautter

    Student assistant

    Student assistant


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The Role of Tall Buildings in the Sustainability of European Cities

Prof. Brian Cody






Fields of reference

Aerodynamics; Architecture; Building ecology; Construction Physics; Energy Saving; Power Technology; Renewable Energy; Solar Architecture; Environmental Design; Heat Technology.



This research project examined as to what extent high rise buildings can contribute to a reduction of the consumption of land, resources and energy by increasing the urban density and as a result improve the sustainable development of cities. The results of the conducted study showed that compared to typical European urban structures, a significant increase in density can be achieved through high vertical structures taking into consideration the necessary distances between buildings for sufficient natural daylight as well as increasing building cores with greater heights of the building. A significant potential to increase the overall energy efficiency (transport, infrastructure, buildings) depending on the structure of the building and the services could be identified. Possibilities to optimize the energetic behavior of high rise buildings was examined within the scope of case studies.



November 2004 - June 2005



Cody, B.: “Die Rolle von Hochhäusern in der nachhaltigen Entwicklung europäischer Städte”, Forschungsjournal der Technischen Universität Graz SS 05, Graz, Österreich, 2005, ISBN 3-902465-18-2



More info: tug online

copyright - Institut für Gebäude und Energie , TU Graz, 2016