A concept to combine the different housing alternative advantages

Samuli Rinne*, Sanna Syri

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Purpose – A dense urban structure cuts down traffic emissions. It also promotes waste heat use and storage possibilities as a form of district heating. However, quality elements associated with detached houses, such as tranquillity and self-expression possibilities, may be lost. Better building quality and alternatives to private car use can enable these elements in smaller spaces, which is assessed here. The paper aims to discuss these issues. Design/methodology/approach – A technology set for an imaginary high-quality (HQ) apartment house is discussed by assessing increased embedded energy of the building structure, due to the HQ measures. HQ solutions include visual barriers, increased sound insulation, roof terraces, large windows, apartment adaptability, bike sheds, electrical cargo bikes and advanced energy solutions. Findings – The increased construction and heating energy use in HQ buildings can be offset if car use is reduced by 10-15 per cent. There is a greater possibility of achieving this reduction if HQ housing can make urban densification more readily acceptable by demonstrating, that good quality housing can exist both in smaller building lots as well as in smaller apartments. Originality/value – The quality issue brings a novel perspective to estimating the environmental impacts of built environment solutions. The approach here is quite simple, but the issue can be discussed more. That is, how much total resource input can be decreased, if the target is not to produce square metres but rather the necessary elements to have a good quality of life.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)551-567
Number of pages17
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 8 Aug 2016
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Apartment adaptability
  • Apartment buildings
  • Building planning
  • Embedded energy
  • Energy efficiency
  • Urban structure

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'A concept to combine the different housing alternative advantages'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this