The influence of urban contextual form in the studies on the relationship between built form and building energy has been attracting increasing attention. However, most emerging studies on this idea adopted form indicators on the basis of urban planning conventions and researchers’ expertise to measure the urban contextual form. This indicator approach often suffers from confounding effects in research and lacks a clear connection to urban energy policy. With the understanding that urban form is often self-organized and self-adapted as a complex system, this study takes a typology approach to measure urban contextual form. Particularly, the local climate zone (LCZ) is used as the typology framework, which has been developed in the urban climatology field to establish standard urban form typologies on the basis of thermal performance. The LCZ typologies connect the individual buildings to their contextual areas through mutual shading and microclimate pathways, which are among the major mechanisms behind the relationship between built form and building energy use. With the LCZ approach, this study investigates how urban contextual forms as typologies influence building energy use in Seoul. The research is divided into two steps. In the first step, an LCZ map for Seoul is created using a GIS-based LCZ mapping method. In the second step, the linear mixed model is employed to examine how individual building characteristics and urban contextual form defined by LCZ classes influence annual building energy use in Seoul in 2018. Results show that LCZ classes significantly influence building energy use both directly and indirectly. The findings suggest a promising application of the LCZ framework in urban energy policies, in addition to its application in microclimate-oriented urban management.
Keywords Sustainable urban form, Urban form typology, Linear mixed model, Urban energy planning, Residential energy