Energy Efficient and Integrated Urban Development .. (Urb.Energy)
Energy Efficient and Integrated Urban Development Action
Start date: Dec 31, 2008,
End date: Jan 23, 2012
The European housing stock is a major contributor to energy waste and CO2 emissions. At the same time the refurbishment rate in the new EU member states still is extremely low and sustainable urban development concepts are barely addressed, neither in local, nor regional or national policies in the Baltic Sea Region (BSR). The project Urb.Energy addresses these issues and aims at the elaboration and partly implementation of transferable integrated concepts and strategies for the sustainable and holistic rehabilitation of residential areas in the BSR. To achieve this target, Urb.Energy builds upon the results of the BSR Interreg III B project BEEN (strategies that promote the energy efficient refurbishment (EER) of the prefabricated housing stock) and combines the approach of integrated urban development with EER of the building stock and energy supply infrastructure, the revaluation of the residential environment and the identification of innovative financing instruments. Thus, Urb.Energy responds to current EU policies which emphasise sustainable urban development strategies as a prerequisite for attractive and successful European cities. At the same time the integrated urban development strategies to be applied focus on an energy efficient housing stock and by this open up financing sources by making use of positive interdisciplinary economic effects which are generated via EER. On this background 16 partners from D, PL, LT, LV, EE, RU and BY representing key actors in national activities for energy efficient settlement structures came together to examine their current approaches with regard to the sustainable development of urban quarters and to prepare integrated urban development strategies for selected target areas. In addition, innovative funding schemes to finance respective activities will be developed taking into account existing funding possibilities. The partnership composition will be supported by a strong network of 20 associated organisations consisting of responsible ministries, city administrations and relevant stakeholders from the fields of housing administration, energy and financing. Within three WPs, the partners will jointly analyse existing approaches in the countries and present applicable integrated urban development strategies. For the target areas the partners will elaborate and partly implement concrete urban development concepts, to be transferred as standardised transnational outputs to other urban quarters in the BSR. The urban strategies and concepts will include the preparation of complex EER measures for buildings and the energy supply infrastructure. They will provide recommendations for the upgrading of the residential environment and the infrastructure. In this context, the participation of the inhabitants and other local actors will be of high relevance. In addition, the project will result in the identification of existing funding possibilities for ERR and integrated urban renewal. Achievements: In the first project phase, the activities of the Urb.Energy partner consortium concentrated on the analyses of potentials and constraints in residential quarters in the BSR, i.e. the description and evaluation of the status quo in selected target areas (TAs) of the participating municipalities as regards urban development, energy efficiency of the building stock and heating supply infrastructure as well as existing financing tools. Based on the results of these analyses, partners developed concepts for the TAs: integrated urban development concepts (IUDCs) and concepts for energy efficient refurbishment (EER) of buildings and heating supply infrastructure. These concepts have been finalized in the second project year. Furthermore, activities focused on the development of financing schemes for the implementation of these concepts and measures. According to the need for action identified, the partners described within their concepts different focal points of activity and defined the future need for investments. The investments shall solve so far untackled problems in residential areas in the BSR. After their pilot implementation, e.g. within the extension stage of the BSR programme, they shall be repeated and integrated into municipal urban development strategies, both in cities of the partner countries and generally on BSR level. German project partners from Berlin and Brandenburg finalised the retrospective case studies and evaluation of projects in their region on energy efficient urban renewal. In the final project phase, the work of the partner consortium concentrated on the compilation of key results and core messages of the project, i.e. the joint development of the final main project outputs: Manual on IUD Approach Targeting at Energy Efficient Residential Areas, Manual on Holistic Strategies for EER of the Housing Stock..., Guidelines for Innovative Use of EU Funds... and Policy Recommendations for Energy Efficient Urban Areas.... These four main outputs, which were presented on the Final Project Conference in December 2011 in Riga, shall be applied by cities and regions in the BSR. They are of high transnational value, as they contribute to liveable, climate friendly and competitive cities in the BSR. Throughout the entire project duration, special attention was given to communication and awareness raising activities. The residents in the TAs and other relevant stakeholders have been involved and informed about the key themes of the project and the concepts and measures to be realised in the TAs. Workshops and seminars have been held all countries, as well as special information days, like the Energy Saving Days in Siauliai, LT. In Estonia, a large national awareness campaign to inform the Estonian public on possibilities to finance EER measures has been supported by Urb.Energy. All results and outputs, which have been produced during the three years of project implementation, are available on the project website.
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