The research project ZenN aimed to reduce energy use in existing buildings and neighbourhoods. The project strived to:
- demonstrate the feasibility of innovative low energy renovation processes for buildings at the neighbourhood scale,
- identify, optimise and disseminate the most promising management and funding methods to facilitate large-scale implementation,
- develop, improve and launch ambitious replication plans at several scales (local, regional etc.).
The three main challenges in connection with the near-zero renovation of existing buildings faced by the ZenN project were: technical challenges, financial challenges and property structure challenges.
Project demonstration sites
ZenN's eight scientific and technological objectives led the project toward the development of a holistic approach on optimised near zero Energy Building renovation actions:
- Harmonising the concept of near Zero Energy Building Renovation (nZEBR). The project established an agreed framework for the definition of near Zero Energy Building Renovation (nZEBR), taking into account area specifics such as climate, construction culture, and others.
- Demonstrating that “Zero Energy Building Renovation” is technically, economically and socially feasible.
- Providing EC EEB databases with validated data from ZenN demonstration objects.
- Identifying new business and management models that facilitate the replication of the demonstration objects.
- Guiding the industry to develop new technological solutions to deploy nZEBR initiatives. Work in the demonstrator contributed to the identification of gaps and shortcomings in current energy renovation techniques and procedures.
- Training relevant sectors to deliver and implement ZEBR solutions.
- Raising awareness in citizens and public authorities on the relevance and advantages of ZEBR.
- Laying out ZenN replication plans, taking advantage of experience gained during implementation of demonstration objects and the interaction with the industry.