In Tampere, the inhabitants of the Tammela district are very proud of their newly renovated and highly energy performant buildings. On 25 April 2018, the city of Tampere invited partners from the STARDUST and EU-GUGLE Smart City Initiatives to take part in a study tour to visit five of the eight buildings that have been refurbished in close cooperation with their owners in the framework of the EU-GUGLE project in Tampere. Participants included representatives from the cities of Aachen (Germany), Bratislava (Slovakia), Cluj (Romania), Gaziantep (Turkey), Kozani (Greece), Milan (Italy), Vienna (Austria), Trento (Italy) and Sestao (Spain).
In Finland, and in the building blocks selected for the EU-GUGLE refurbishment project, most of the inhabitants own their apartments, and building are thus managed through housing associations, where the owners are represented and vote, according to the size of their apartment. During the study tour of the Tammela district, the city of Tampere invited members of these housing associations to present the measures implemented in their building and share their experience on the retrofitting process. All the owners expressed great satisfaction with the outcomes of the renovation plans. “Considering the rise of energy prices and the amount of energy savings that we were planning to achieve, it was not difficult to convince owners to vote the refurbishment plans”, says Pertti Vesterinen, Chairman of the housing association of the apartment building located on Pohjolankatu 18-20. In this particular building, the owners were so happy about the results of the first refurbishment works, that they decided to push further and inaugurate the first two-way district heating system ever installed in Finland. With this new system, the building can feed the excess heat produced via the solar panels on the roof, and via the ground source heat pump located underneath the garden, directly into the Tampere district heating network.
In overall, the eight buildings involved in the renovation programme have achieved an average of 40% energy savings, through the addition of external insulation, the replacement of windows and lights, as well as the introduction of heat pumps and solar panels. After the study visit, on 26 April, partners from the EU-GUGLE Smart City Initiative gathered to discuss the progress of the work in the other pilot cities of the project, including Aachen, Bratislava, Milan and Sestao, and plan activities for the year to come.