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Future buildings

Affordable energy renovation –
a real life example

Large-scale energy renovation could be a major contributor in addressing the climate challenge and improving living conditions. A new concept demonstrates how this can be achieved through the refurbishment of one of 385 houses in a social housing complex in Anderlecht, Brussels, Belgium.

9 out of 10 buildings today will still be in use in 2050 and 75% of Europe’s buildings are not energy efficient. Affordability will be a key driver in speeding up the rate of renovation. High cost is often the barrier when homeowners decide whether to renovate or not. Reducing the cost of renovating is therefore another paramount factor in adding more volume to energy-efficient buildings. 

Affordable, large-scale sustainable renovation

Affordable, easy to reproduce and scalable - these were the main criteria set up for the RenovActive project in Anderlecht, Belgium. The aim of the renovation project was to test the Active House principles in social housing and single-family homes where cost, comfort and energy efficiency have to go hand in hand.

The main goal of RenovActive is to prove the financial viability of Active House renovation in social housing schemes across Europe. The estimated renovation costs associated with RenovActive met the tight budget framework of social housing in Brussels and the requirements set up in the Energy Performance of Buildings (EPB) standard.

"We believe that more attention should be paid to health and well-being. For instance, we must be concerned about the quality of the air inside airtight buildings. Moreover, I think this project is really interesting from a social point of view. It is important to enable as many people as possible to live and work in sustainable and healthy buildings," says Christian Fosseur, Managing Director of VELUX Belgium

A modular concept

Another goal of RenovActive was to develop a sustainable concept suitable for large-scale renovation and modernisation, i.e. a concept that could be replicated in financial and technical terms. The renovation was designed as a modular concept to obtain more daylight, better ventilation, sun shading, insulation, heating and more living space.

The modular concept allows easy reproduction of the concepts in other buildings.  Likewise, the concept can be scaled from very high-end to more simple and cost-effective solutions.

Background information - RenovActive

The RenovActive concept provides an affordable and reproducible solution to renovate buildings by balancing three factors: Comfort, Energy and Environment.

The renovation concept is based on the so-called Active House principles - focusing on a building’s architectural quality and energy efficiency, along with human health, comfort and well-being factors, and environmental benefits.

The RenovActive concept has been developed by the VELUX Group in partnership with the social housing association “Le Foyer Anderlechtois” which owns 3,600 homes in Belgium. Improved quality of life and increased energy efficiency are central concerns of both partners.

The concept was designed by ONO Architectuur after developing an ambitious renovation proposal which not only meets the technical parameters established by the Active House principles but also inspires to improve the overall quality of life of the surrounding area.

The renovation will be completed in spring 2016.

For further information, please see: www.renovactive.velux.be/en/

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