The importance of built form with Dr Julie Futcher

As part of RIBA London’s 2019 Sustainable Architecture Festival, Dr Julie Futcher explores the influence of built-form (the dimensions of buildings and their placement in relation to each other) on the background climate conditions as a means of promoting comfortable healthy environments to encourage more sustainable urban practice.

Reporting on measured data collected from a network of 80 sensors installed along a series of urban streets in the City of London we demonstrate the direct influence of the City’s morphology on the urban climate, access to passive resources (day/sunlight and ventilation), and in turn, on air quality, recognised criteria in creating healthy liveable cities.

By gathering evidence on the role of built form in modifying background climate conditions in this way, results capture the dynamic nature of building and urban form on the wider environment highlighting the long-term benefits of a ‘form’ first approach towards sustainable urban development.
These results are being used for the development of a broad planning framework for ‘built form’ driven climate effects to guide urban development in a climate sensitive manner’.

Julie is a chartered architect with significant experience in professional practice. Since completing her PhD, she has worked as an independent researcher on climate responsive urbanism to promote comfortable healthy environments that encourage more sustainable urban practice. Julie has developed a novel approach to link urban design with the experiences of pedestrians and urban dwellers which includes an ‘urban climate’ walking tour.