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Retrofitting traditional buildings: a risk-management framework integrating energy and moisture

Gori, V; Marincioni, V; Altamirano-Medina, H; (2021) Retrofitting traditional buildings: a risk-management framework integrating energy and moisture. Buildings and Cities , 2 (1) pp. 411-424. 10.5334/bc.107. Green open access

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Abstract

Traditional buildings constitute a large proportion of the building stock in many countries worldwide; around 40% of the UK’s housing stock was built before 1940 and was primarily made with solid masonry walls. Only 11% of UK solid-walled dwellings had insulation installed, suggesting the high potential of the low-carbon retrofit of traditional buildings. However, there is evidence of the occurrence of unintended consequences, often associated with excess moisture. A method is presented for moisture risk management that includes the development of a process and a framework. These tools are then integrated into a novel framework for the combined energy and moisture performance retrofit of traditional buildings. An example of the framework’s practical application is provided, with a focus on retrofit measures for solid-wall insulation. The proposed systematic approach demonstrates the interconnected nature of energy and moisture. It harmonises the principles needed to support organisations in the delivery of robust retrofit of traditional buildings through the integration of pre-retrofit building assessment and post-retrofit monitoring in the process. The risk-management process and framework presented can be valuable tools to support designers in providing robust and scalable retrofit measures and strategies. PRACTICE RELEVANCE: An integrated energy and moisture risk-management process is presented to support designers in the retrofit of traditional buildings. This is accompanied by a framework that explains the steps required for moisture risk management at the various stages of the retrofit process. This systematic approach harmonises the principles needed to support organisations in delivering robust low-carbon retrofits and integrates pre- and post-retrofit building assessment in the process. While previous work has addressed energy and moisture management separately, this integrates the two aspects into a framework for risk management. An example illustrates the relevant modes and methods of assessment and monitoring in support of risk management. When combined with practical guidelines and training, the risk-management process and framework can be valuable tools to provide robust and scalable retrofit measures and strategies. The framework was developed within the context of the UK construction industry; it can be adapted to other contexts.

Type: Article
Title: Retrofitting traditional buildings: a risk-management framework integrating energy and moisture
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.5334/bc.107
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.5334/bc.107
Language: English
Additional information: © 2021 The Author(s). This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC-BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. See http://creativecommons.org/ licenses/by/4.0/. Buildings and Cities is a peer-reviewed open access journal published by Ubiquity Press.
Keywords: Building assessment, building monitoring, building stocks, energy, moisture risk, retrofit, retrofit strategy, risk assessment, solid-wall insulation, traditional buildings
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10127195
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