Designing better buildings to stop water damage

27 March 2023
New research tackles problem mould and water resilience
Associate Professor Arianna Brambilla from the School of Architecture, Design and Planning will work with the Victorian Building Authority to establish best practice guidelines around the construction of moisture-resilient buildings.

A new research project, led by Associate Professor Arianna Brambilla from the Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning, will investigate how better building design and construction can tackle the issue of problem mould and water damage in buildings.

Associate Professor Brambilla will work on the project with colleagues Dr Eugenia Gasparri and Dr Aysu Kuru, also from the Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning

The Victorian Building Authority granted the researchers $110,000 in funding to provide guidance to the building industry on how to better design, construct and maintain buildings to increase their resilience to moisture.

“Water damage in houses and buildings is regularly exacerbated by poor design, construction and maintenance practices,” Associate Professor Brambilla said.

“As condensation and mould in buildings has a largely negative affect on human health and the quality of people’s living spaces, this research will aim to provide building designers and regulators with practical guidance to counter this common problem.”

The researchers will analyse typical building envelopes constructed in Victoria. A building envelope relates to the exterior design and construction of a house – consisting of the roof, sub floor, exterior doors, windows and walls.

Associate Professor Brambilla said by analysing building details such as corners, balconies, walls and roof intersections, the team hopes to find a way to increase moisture resistance in the built environment.

The research will build on an existing evidence base of research, and inform regulatory decisions to improve the quality of the built environment in Victoria. 

This research was awarded under the second round of research grants funded by the Victorian Building Authority.

Associate Professor Arianna Brambilla

Dr Arianna Brambilla, Associate Professor in Architecture. 

Arianna Brambilla is an Associate Professor in Architecture, where she works at the nexus of architecture, construction, building physics and engineering.

With a strong focus on sustainability, Associate Professor Brambilla’s research interprets construction as a holistic concept – including how we can make our built environments healthier and more adaptable

Declaration: This research was funded by the Victorian Building Authority as part of the VBA’s Research Grant Program, which supports researchers at Australian universities to find solutions to challenges in the Victorian building sector.

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