Milan: adding great technology innovations

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Works on public housing buildings in via San Bernardo 29/a and 48-50, which began in July 2018, are now focusing on the implementation of energy efficiency measures. The buildings, located in Chiaravalle area, in the Southern part of the city, will be retrofitted towards the nearly-zero energy standard and high quality indoor comfort conditions for the tenants, thanks also to the funding coming from “EU-GUGLE” and “Sharing Cities” European projects. Works are foreseen to last one year in the buildings, involving a total of 144 dwellings (66 at 29/a, 39 at 48 and at 50) and 135 families.

“After the big decontamination and refurbishment intervention for the former ‘white houses’ in via Feltrinelli 16  (Rogoredo area), which was completed four years ago assigning the renovated dwellings to the selected low income families, this new intervention in via San Bernardo adds two projects with great technology innovation– says Gabriele Rabaiotti, Milan’s Assessor for Housing and Public Works-. Besides the funding for energy efficiency and for making boilers work with natural gas in private homes, made available by the Environment Department of the Municipality of Milan, public housing buildings can become a place for experimentations too. Here, more than anywhere else, beyond the environmental attention, interventions will lead to energy use reductions and, consequently, tenants will have more favorable bills. This is extremely important, thinking of all the families with income troubles”.

In the buildings in via San Bernardo, interventions will be focused on the building envelope and on the mechanical systems, and will not force the tenants to move elsewhere for the whole duration of the works. An innovative glueless external thermal insulation coating system will be installed on the buildings’ external facades, allowing to reduce time and cost of installation. The roof and balconies will be insulated as well, to lower the heat exchanges by transmission between the indoor and outdoor environment, with a strong reduction of thermal bridges.

A centralized heating system that will work with heat pumps which will produce hot water for domestic use and for heating. In the apartments, thermostatic valves placed on the radiators, will allow the tenants to optimize the use of the heating system.

New air-tight doors and windows will be installed, thus reducing also the heat losses by ventilation.

The optimal air exchange will be guaranteed by a centralized mechanical ventilation system with heat recovery installed under the roof, with air distribution in all the dwellings. There will be solar protection systems on the windows and door-windows on the external facades, with adjustable shading devices, which will allow controlling the natural light, improving the visual comfort inside the apartments, and reducing the solar heat gains during the summer season.

The current lighting system in common areas – external spaces, stairs and entrances – will be substituted by long lasting LED lamps with low energy use.

To further reduce the energy demand from the grid, a photovoltaic and a solar thermal plant will be installed on the roof, allowing to produce and use clean electrical energy.

With dedicated sensors of environmental quality (monitoring temperature, relative humidity and CO2 concentration) and energy meters for heating and hot water placed in each apartment, the performances of the renovated buildings will be continuously monitored, making possible to evaluate the achievement of the targeted design values and the energy savings compared to the pre-retrofit situation.

The whole budgeted amount for the two building sites is 9,350,000 € (4,850,000 € for San Bernardo 48-50 and 4,500,000 € for San Bernardo 29/a), including the European funds. For both buildings sites, when works will end, there will be also an application for the national incentive scheme “Conto Termico”.