EU project Sinfonia
Increasing end energy consumption and emission in towns endangers our health, our climate, our economic and living environment and our quality of life. In view of this, housing associations and energy suppliers in North and South Tyrol are working together to reduce energy consumption and CO2 emissions on future refurbishment as well as in using more renewable energy sources for power, heat and cooling supply. The fact that they do not need to charge their tenants additional costs for any refurbishment, which cost more than usual, is possible thanks to the EU project Sinfonia.
In Innsbruck and Bolzano, the EU project "Sinfonia" supports upcoming refurbishment measures to improve heat grids, invest in high-quality and cost-effective refurbishment of residential buildings as well as develop a hybrid network. The two regional capitals have become European pioneering regions for "Smart Cities & Communities". By 2018, in specific areas in both towns - so-called "smart districts" - technical innovations and measures will reduce energy demand by 40 to 50 per cent, increase the amount of renewable energies of total demand by 20 per cent, reduce CO2 emissions and, therefore, improve the quality of life. The objectives and measures of this future-oriented urban refurbishment model is being funded by the European Commission's "Smart Cities and Communities" Sinfonia project with up to 27 million euros – money that ensures that upcoming refurbishment measures can be carried out at a much higher level and so benefit the people in the smart districts directly.
Sinfonia has turned Innsbruck and Bolzano into Smart Cities
Tyrolean companies, research institutes and housing associations are working together to develop sophisticated technical measures, which can also be transferred to other urban regions, for high-quality building refurbishments as well as for implementing intelligently connected power, heat and cooling grids with a high level of energy from renewable sources. These measures will then be adapted for five further European towns – the "early adopter" cities of Rosenheim (DE), La Rochelle (F), Seville (ES), Paphos (CY) and Boras (SE) – and prepared for implementation. Nine other European towns (cluster cities) have already shown a lot of interest in the results from Innsbruck and Bolzano. Innsbruck and Bolzano, therefore, regard Sinfonia as a true flagship project that will bring not only added value, knowledge and quality of life to Innsbruck and Tyrol, but also international visibility regarding the future of energy.
The EU funds measures with up to 27.5 million euros
The "Smart Cities & Communities" Sinfonia project has received proposals from more than 30 partners in eight European countries for funding from the EU's Seventh Programme for Research. 13 of these partners come from Tyrol and another eight from South Tyrol. The project coordinator is the SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden. To receive EU funding, Partners have submitted proposals of work and measures to a total value of 43.1 million euros within the framework of Sinfonia, with the EU providing 27 million euros. For this project, a total of 21.4 million euros are being invested n the eastern district of Innsbruck, with about 12.2 million euros coming from the EU. Based on the total funding figure of 27.5 million euros, Sinfonia has so far been the largest EU project from the Seventh Programme for Research (FP7) in the field of energy that has been carried out in Tyrol. Furthermore, it is also the largest FP7 project in the Smart Cities programme that is being carried out in Austria. Overall, Sinfonia will release up to 125 million euros in investments for an energy-efficient Innsbruck. The Sinfonia partners are: city of Innsbruck, IKB AG, Neue Heimat Tirol, Innsbrucker Immobilien GmbH & Co KG, University of Innsbruck, Passive House Institute Innsbruck, Liebherr Household Appliances and TIGAS as well as the affiliated partners ATB Becker, e3 Consult GmbH, alpS and TIWAG. Standortagentur Tirol as the District Leader is responsible for coordinating the cooperation between the partners. The Renewable Energies Cluster Tyrol initiated the project and works closely with the European funding advice team at Standortagentur Tirol.
The Sinfonia project received funding from the EU's Seventh Programme for Research, Technological Development and Demonstration under grant agreement No 609019.