Getting Building Height Right for the Climate

By [email protected] It may seem obvious that cities filled with big buildings use energy more efficiently than dispersed suburban landscapes, and that newer, taller buildings are more energy-efficient than older, squatter structures.

People widely understand that New York City, for example, ranks well on energy use per person, where housing tends toward the vertical, one boiler room can serve many units, and heat rises into the units above, rather than being lost to the sky.

But now some climate-minded architects and engineers are questioning that orthodoxy. It’s starting to look like there might even be a sweet spot for building height: the

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