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



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


    Project Assistant/Lector

    Sebastian Sautter



    Martin Schneebacher


    Student assistant


    Office hours

    Monday - Friday, 09:00 - 12:00



    Aleksandar Tepavcevic

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



    Alexandru Dan


    Student assistant



    Christiane Wermke



    Minoru Suzkuki


    Student assistant



 / E


Smart Modernization Terrassenhaussiedlung



Fields of reference

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



March 1, 2017 –May 31, 2018


Field of study

Building Performance



Austrian Research Promotion Agency, FFG (Climate and Energy Fund)



Smart Cities Demo


External cooperation partners

Institute of Housing Research, Graz (Coordinator)

The City LAB, Graz

NEXT Vertriebs- und Handels GmbH, Graz

Haus der Architektur – HDA Graz

Karoline Kreimer-Hartmann, Mag.

Architekt DI Eugen Gross, Dipl.-Ing. Architect


Project Description

The exploratory study Smarte Modernisierung Terrassenhaussiedlung – SONTE has the goal to develop a general guideline for assessing the modernization possibilities of participatory inventory designed residential buildings. The Terrassenhaussiedlung Graz-St. Peter serves as a development and test bed at the same time. The development of the guideline is shown exemplarily and objectified for transmission to other residential buildings. The focus is a comprehensive, holistic approach including ecological and social sustainability.

The Terrassenhaussiedlung in Graz-St. Peter is the largest and internationally best-known housing estate of Styria. At the same time, it is the largest owner-management unit in Austria with more than 500 apartments and more than 1,500 residents. After 40 years of use, the issue of modernization in terms of energy and sustainability must be assessed. The progressive nature of constructing the Terrassenhaussiedlung carries a high potential for an integrated modernization concept. The innovative approach of participatory involvement of residents in the development of social housing is unique. By using modern participation techniques, the existing community will be re-enabled to connect with key stakeholders and intensively involve them in the drafting of the modernization concept. As relevant fields of action, the focus is on the building and energy, green and open spaces, urban mobility as well as information and communication. Thereby, the necessary consideration of the settlement as a whole system in terms of energy, structural and social issues is possible. Due to the strong interaction and networking of the different areas, the optimization of the individual solution is achieved.


More info: tug online




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