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Smart Cities Marketplace

GrowSmarter Site Barcelona


Project status



Voted European Capital of Innovation 2014, Barcelona is a vast metropolitan hub with a long tradition of industry and entrepreneurship. Barcelona City Council encourages strategic initiatives aimed at generating international collaboration, and promoting a global and forward-looking vision to businesses and public bodies, as well as scientific and technological centres.

Barcelona’s development towards a smart city began over 30 years ago when the city installed fibre optic cables to connect two municipal buildings. Currently, the City Council is using public-private partnerships to encourage innovation in areas such as transport, shopping, street lighting and environmental monitoring. Barcelona has been transformed into an urban laboratory, piloting projects and services that make the city more open, efficient and friendly.

The innovation zone, known as the 22nd District, has been chosen for Barcelona's implementation of the smart solutions within the GrowSmarter project. This multi-purpose area mixes residential, industrial and academic buildings in a lively, vibrant quarter bordering the Mediterranean Sea. Solutions being implemented in the 22nd District include introducing electric vehicles and installing charging infrastructure, refurbishing current buildings to create zero-energy blocks and installing district heating and cooling.

Demo Site Expected Impact

* Detailed information regarding the technical and financial performance will be available at a later stage.

The demonstration site in Barcelona consists of 10 refurbished buildings with an overall gross floor area of 33 110 m². The final energy demand of the site has been reduced by 2767 MWh every year thanks to the refurbishment.

According to SCIS calculations based on energy design data and the respective emission factors available (European factors – EN 15603), the primary energy savings go up to 5729 MWh/yr while the carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions reduction amounts to 1610 tonnes every year.



* Detailed information regarding the technical and financial performance will be available at a later stage.

The solutions demonstrated in Barcelona are:

Energy efficiency in buildings

  • Retrofitting the building envelope
  • Building services: heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) and lighting
    • Efficient lighting
  • Heat pumps
    • Heat pumps for heat storage in heating systems and hot water systems

Energy systems integration

  • District heating and cooling
  • Electrical energy storage
    • Batteries for renewable energy storage
  • Smart street lighting
    • Lamp posts as bases for sensors, WiFi, mobile networks
  • Waste heat recovery
    • Recovering waste water heat from the drain
    • Open district heating with feed-in of waste heat
    • Waste heat from data centres and vacuum waste systems
    • Waste heat from fridges and freezers in supermarkets

Mobility & Transport

  • Clean fuels and fuelling infrastructure

    • Developing charging infrastructure
    • Setting up refuelling facilities for alternative heavy duty fuels
  • Car sharing
    • Green parking index in combination with car-sharing pool with electric vehicles
  • Bicycle infrastructure
    • Electrical and cargo bike pool
  • Urban freight logistics
    • Integrated multi-mode transport for light goods
    • Micro distribution of freight



  • Building energy management system

    • Active house/home energy management systems/smart home system
    • Energy visualisation
    • Smart meters
    • New adaptive control and regulation techniques for heating systems
    • Dynamic price models
  • Urban data platform
    • Big open data platform
  • Traffic control system
    • Smart guiding to alternative fuel stations and fast charging
    • Traffic signals synchronised to prioritise certain vehicle movements of goods
  • Travel demand management
  • ICT as planning support
    • Weather metering predicting the storage demand
    • Smart waste collection


Roberto Furio Dominguez
City of Barcelona

Building aspects

  • Building Energy Services
  • heating (only)
  • Installed Renewable Energy Sources
  • photovoltaic - building integrated
  • Technology used to supply the buildings
  • heat pump: reversible

Mobility Type of Intervention

  • Infrastructure

Thematic Field

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