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Residential Renovation towards nearly zero energy CITIES

News from our network

Real cities, real solutions, real impact – R2CITIES and fellow projects cluster together to extend their reach and impact in South & Eastern Europe.

Four complementary projects chose to join forces during the ‘Smart Cities’ – Exhibition and Conference for South - East Europe, 11-13 March 2015, in Sofia, Bulgaria where R2CITIES, CITyFiED, RemoUrban and Direction hosted a common exhibition stand and shared their knowledge in the accompanying professional conference.

Between them, the projects represent 12 demonstration sites and 17 follower cities delivering tangible partnerships and achievements in large-scale renovation and replicable smart cities initiatives. This rich experience helped to present a range of expertise to exhibition visitors and congress attendees - from cost-effective innovations creating the latest near zero-energy new buildings and retrofits to replicable strategies for smarter cities and citizen-driven urban regeneration.

In a panel session chaired by Krisztina Dely of the Covenant of Mayors, Ruben García, Head of Smart Cities at CARTIF gave a presentation profiling nine case studies in financing from across the EU – drawing heavily of the experiences of R2CITIES; while Miguel García, also of CARTIF and RemoUrban project manager, spoke about the methodology to evaluate residential districts renovation towards nearly Zero Energy Districts (nZED).

Amongst the many discussions, the exhibition was a valuable opportunity to discover the region’s initiatives in energy efficiency and smart cities. All four projects came away with a greater understanding of the key stakeholders and their requirements – hopefully a solid basis for further replication and future partnerships.

R2CITIES at the EeB PPP Impact Workshop 2015

R2CITIES was present during the recent EeB PPP Impact Workshop 2015, along with 9 other projects in Area 4: Deep energy renovation of districts and smart energy efficient solutions for cities. Ali Vasallo (CARTIF) was presenting current and expected impacts of these ten projects, and both he and Julia Vicente as well as Helga Treiber from joined forces to represent R2CITIES at the event. Crosscutting technological issues in this group of projects concern the methodology applied to deploy highly energy efficient retrofitting techniques, reducing the gap between projected and actual energy use, providing the construction sector with specific abilities, as well as sharing a common data monitoring structure.

Among the non-technological issues, citizen’s engagement and business models for public procurement are of major concern. Synergies and benefits of clustering projects were highlighted, such as the MySmartCityDistrict initiative in which R2CITIES is participating.  

R2CITIES gets smart in Amsterdam

The R2CITIES project shared its insights into accelerating smart urban transformation this 2-5 June at the Smart City Event in Amsterdam.

Whilst the main agenda had plenty for the 500 or so participants, with keynote speeches from Neelie Kroes and a range of academic and industry, R2CITIES shared project plans in detail in a central presentation and accompanying round table discussions. Rubén García, Head of Smart Cities Projects, CARTIF and Sergio Sanz, Smart City Valladolid and Palencia representative and Head of Energy department, CARTIF co-chaired a roundtable session on designing, constructing, and managing large scale residential district renovation projects to achieve nearly zero energy cities.

With some solid progress across three demonstration sites, nearly 60,000m2 of conditioned areas in renovation and results appearing from the project the team had some productive discussions with interested stakeholders from across Europe. Specific attention was paid to the cost effectiveness and the creative new business models being explored in R2CITIES.

Metropolitan Solutions

The Metropolitan Solutions smart-city event gathers around 4,000 experts every year and representatives from Cartif attended the fifth edition of 20-22 May in Berlin. Ali Vasallo of the Energy Division had the chance to meet Mrs. Violeta Bulc, European Commissioner for Transport to present the projects, their ambitions and the cities and consortium members making them a reality.
R2CITIES , together with REMOURBAN and CITyFiED had a poster at the exhibition.

R2CITIES coordinator at Spain’s Smarty City Congress – Madrid

R2CITIES coordinator Rubén García participated in Spain’s Smart Cities Congress that took place in Madrid between 24-25 March. This national event was aimed at exchanging knowledge and experience about smart cities across the country, and taking on-board initiatives and experience from other countries.

As head of smart city projects at Fundación CARTIF, Rubén García delivered a presentation entitled « strategy for rehabilitating and transforming residential areas into nearly zero energy zones ». This was based on the project CITyFiED project, one of six other projects, including R2CITIES, that belong to the MySmartCityDistrict group.