Housing Evolutions Hub

Renovation of 30 apartments in Zaramaga

Vitoria-Gasteiz Construction and Development, Environment and Resource efficiency, Relations to stakeholders
Responsible Housing Award

Description

The project is a part of the VISESA and Basque Government strategy to improve the quality of life of citizens, while contributing to the local and regional strategies for reduction of energy use and CO2 emissions in the residential sector. VISESA is a public company of the Housing Department of the Basque Government, whose main objective is to promote high quality subsidized housing, thus contributing to the effort by the Regional Government to make the right to housing in all social sectors a reality. The proposed building renovation strategy was planned with a view to build an attractive building, with new lifts added in external blocks upon agreement with the city council for occupation of public land for this purpose and with the best possible energy performance.

The project was set out as a landmark project for the area, aiming to become an example to be replicated and give rise to a domino effect involving similar courses of action in the district and, by extension, in other districts of Vitoria-Gasteiz.

Context

The project is a part of the VISESA and Basque Government strategy to improve the quality of life of citizens, while contributing to the local and regional strategies for reduction of energy use and CO2 emissions in the residential sector. VISESA is a public company of the Housing Department of the Basque Government, whose main objective is to promote high quality subsidized housing, thus contributing to the effort by the Regional Government to make the right to housing in all social sectors a reality. The proposed building renovation strategy was planned with a view to build an attractive building, with new lifts added in external blocks upon agreement with the city council for occupation of public land for this purpose and with the best possible energy performance.
The project was set out as a landmark project for the area, aiming to become an example to be replicated and give rise to a domino effect involving similar courses of action in the district and, by extension, in other districts of Vitoria-Gasteiz.

Actors involved

Results

In terms of financing, the project has been realised thanks to funds from various sources, including the City of Vitoria-Gasteiz, the Basque Government RENOVE programme and from the EU as demonstration project within PIMES project (EU FP7 programme). Owners had to contribute with about 33% of own funds, which facilitated financing through a “common loan” to the whole  community. Thus, it reduced credit management costs and did not constitute a new mortgage for the apartment owners. VISESA also provided technical assistance through the building renovation, including mediation with the project architects and the construction company, which is another aspect not common in private building refurbishment. This role of VISESA was highly appreciated by the neighbours, and has served as a pilot experience to be replicated. The technical solution with high efficiency and renewable energy integration is also innovative, and is expected that could be further replicated. The increased value of the property is also an indirect benefit to the owners. This action is expected to be replicated in the neighbourhood, improving general appearance and quality of life for the citizens, and contributing to the reduction of energy
use and emissions.

✚ Very impressive result of the energy renovation: from an
initial “E” energy label, the building has progressed to an
“A” energy performance level
✚ Organisation of workshops where residents could learn
about their consumption and ways to save energy
✚ 67% of residents report a better standard of living after
the renovation
✚ Smart use of public funds including also EU’s FP7

Why it works

During the project, multiple workshops were carried out; from initial design workshops discussing proposals, to energy awareness workshops explaining to neighbours different energy efficiency
strategies including different behaviour to reduce energy use as well as to final sessions after refurbishment making sure they understood the building systems and are able to operate them efficiently. Socio-economic surveys were carried out to compare the situation before and after the refurbishment, with 67% of the respondents agreeing that their standard of living has increased after the retrofitting. Monitoring of technical parameters regarding energy use for heating, indoor comfort, and renewable energy production is also ongoing, and results generally show good performance of the building. This complete set of documented experience and results will serve as a demonstration of good practices and contribute to the replication of the project.

Scale

local http://www.visesa.eus/