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GrowSmarter: Transforming Cities for a Smart, Sustainable Europe


EU contribution
Total costs
Funding programme
SCC 1 - 2014 Smart Cities and Communities solutions integrating energy, transport, ICT sectors through lighthouse (large scale demonstration - first of the kind) projects


GrowSmarter aimed to stimulate city uptake of smart solutions by using the three Lighthouse cities Stockholm (Sweden), Cologne (Germany) and Barcelona (Spain) as a way to showcase 12 Smart City solutions: from advanced information and communication technology and better connected urban mobility, to incorporating renewable energy sources directly into the city’s supply network. This provided other cities with valuable insights on how they work in practice and opportunities for replication.

The 12 Smart City solutions were split into three areas of action:

  • Low energy districts: Smart building shell refurbishment, Smart building logistics, Smart energy-saving tenants, Smart local electricity management
  • Integrated Infrastructures: Smart street lighting, Waste heat recovery, Smart waste collection, Big data management
  • Sustainable Urban Mobility: Sustainable delivery, Smart traffic management, Alternative fuel driven vehicles, Smart mobility solutions




Project demonstration sites

Fellow cities


Best practice: Mobility hubs / stations in Cologne 

In Cologne, several mobility stations were implemented, offering multiple mobility options at one location. The mobility stations can vary in the type of location, size and mobility options available such as public transport, electric car-sharing, conventional car-sharing, timesharing of private and public parking spaces, as well as conventional bike-sharing and e-bike-sharing. The key steps taken to establish mobility stations included identification of possible locations including analysis of customer needs, securing permits, preparing parking spaces, installing equipment, and preparing customer interfaces such as ticketing systems and signage. The mobility station signage developed by Cologne has become the standard used in the Federal State of North-Rhine Westphalia with the city of Cologne planning to expand the multi-modal mobility stations. The successful implementation of such mobility hubs and stations relies on land ownership and regulations.

Impacts and results:

  • 10 mobility stations in the neighborhood of Mülheim

  • 54 sustainable vehicles were used

  • 60% CO2 reduction were achieved

  • Behavioral change and encouragement away from cars towards more active modes


GrowSmarter aimed to improve the quality of life for European citizens by implementing:

  • better options for urban transport
  • better deliveries of goods
  • better waste handling
  • cost-efficient refurbishment (100000 m2)
  • improvement in street environment
  • lower energy costs
  • increased job creation (1500)

GrowSmarter aimed to reduce environmental impact by:

  • reducing the need for energy (60%),
  • reducing the greenhouse gas emissions from energy use and increased use of renewable energy ­(more than 60%)
  • reducing the emissions of transports (60%)

GrowSmarter aimed to create sustainable economic development by:

  • achieving increased cost efficiency by lowering the combined capital and operational cost (reducing costs for energy, reducing costs for maintenance, investment, depreciation period, interest rate)
  • increasing economic growth (locally, regionally, nationally, internationally)



Gustaf Landahl
City of Stockholm

Building aspects

  • Building Energy Services
  • heating (only)
  • Installed Renewable Energy Sources
  • photovoltaic - building integrated
  • Technology used to supply the buildings
  • boiler
  • Technology used to supply the buildings
  • district heating (DH) network
  • Technology used to supply the buildings
  • electrical storage
  • Technology used to supply the buildings
  • heat pump: absorption
  • Technology used to supply the buildings
  • heat pump: adsorption
  • Technology used to supply the buildings
  • heat pump: reversible

Energy Carriers

  • Heat/district heat
  • Waste heat
  • ‘Green’ electricity

Energy Systems Types

  • Infrastructure & System Integration
  • DHC extension

Mobility Type of Intervention

  • Infrastructure
  • Vehicles

Thematic Field

  • Information and Communication Technologies
  • Mobility and Transport
  • Refurbished Building(s)


GrowSmarter_Work programme Proposal
(8.87 MB - PDF)

Project data