Amsterdam-Noord, one of the 14 districts of the city of Amsterdam, has been developed rapidly in the post war period. For most of these buildings renovation is required, both from a technical as well as from a social point of view. Within Staccato an approach with an enormous impact in sustainability is demonstrated in a project of 1172 dwellings called Het Breed. Het Breed is a much talked about housing complex designed by architect Van Gool and built in the 1960’s. It exists of 11 five- storey buildings all connected by air bridges (relic from old airport). The dwellings are owned by two housing associations. A certain number of houses will be sold.
The renovation of the dwellings started in September 2008. Unfortunately it was stopped after 1 month due to various problems. A restart is scheduled in spring 2010. Meanwhile the integration of a sustainable energy system into the energy supply system is carried out.

Energy efficiency in buildings (REU)
The housing blocks in Het Breed will be insulated to the same level as the standard for new housing. Meaning new façades, double glazing and improvement of the ventilation system. This will give a 50% reduction in energy consumption to the national renovation standard.

Sustainable Energy Supply (SES)
The space heating and domestic hot water for the 11 buildings are produced in 4 boiler houses. The 4 boiler houses will be equipped with high efficiency boilers. An additional reduction on carbon emissions will be achieved by the integration of sustainable energy into the energy supply system. In Het Breed a collective heat system with 1.200 m2 solar thermal collectors for domestic hot water will be fitted. The use of low temperature heating (65 °C in stead of 90 °C) brings CO2 emissions further down.

Integration of SES and REU
The measures in the apartments and the infrastructure are closely related. Energy efficiency measures are a condition for a cost effective integration of sustainable energy. In Het Breed the options for the integration between energy efficiency and sustainability will be demonstrated. A monitoring plan has been set up to determine the actual energy-saving and the use of renewable energy compared to the current buildings and ‘business-as-usual’ renovations.

Specific Innovations
The project incorporates far reaching insulation measures, to the level of new housing. The sustainable energy measures are even more ambitious than the requirements for new housing and will be an example for similar existing housing projects in the area and other cities.
During the renovation the tenants can stay in their apartments or use a temporary dwelling.

Partners working on the Dutch demonstration site:

  • Ymere, housing association
  • EigenHaard, housing association
  • Eneco, energy company
  • Stadsdeel Amsterdam-Noord, city district
  • Ecofys, research and consulting company on sustainable energy
  • IVAM, research and consulting company on sustainable energy

More information on the Dutch project:

Staccato is a project of the concerto initiative co-funded by the European Commission under the Sixth Framework Programme