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IDOM is part of the PROBONO project within the H2020 program

Undertaking the urban renewal of six European cities following the highest standards of sustainability


The European Union has concentrated a large part of its research and innovation activities in the Framework Program, Horizon 2020 (H2020): One of its missions is to efficiently renew European cities in terms of energy and resources. Within the program, the EU launched a call that received a total of 115 proposals. The PROBONO project, of which IDOM is a part, has been one of the selected ones. PROBONO with 47 partners of 13 nationalities will receive a total financing of €20 million. Among the partners are technology companies, engineering companies, construction companies and local authorities such as the Madrid City Council.

The objective is to design and implement solutions for urban regeneration that are scalable and that contemplate the sustainability standards established by the European Green Deal.

To do this, innovative methodologies will be developed that will allow the implementation of feasible solutions both for individual buildings and the creation of green districts, which not only have zero CO2 emissions, but also a positive energy balance.

The project includes a social approach, prioritizing solutions that involve various social agents.

Madrid Nuevo Norte

To test the feasibility of the PROBONO project, six districts of European cities have been selected: Madrid, Dublin, Porto, Brussels, Aarhus and Prague. The six districts, called Living LABs, will include positive energy balance and zero carbon emissions among their goals.

Specifically, IDOM is responsible for the design of the district heating and cooling network that will be developed in Madrid Nuevo Norte. These networks will be based on renewable energy, with small hydraulic links that take advantage of the coexistence of residential and tertiary buildings.

IDOM has proposed an innovative network that hybridizes geothermal and photovoltaic technologies, with the goal of zero emissions, in which “geothermal modules” are designed underground, connected to each other so that the network, efficient and connected, is “invisible” and has the ability to grow as the city grows.

As part of the proposal presented by the consortium, the project includes the design and construction of part of the network (pilot project) that connects a residential plot and a tertiary plot so that the ability to recover heat between zones can be tested. The entire system will be controlled and managed using a digital model that will allow maximum performance, stakeholder involvement, scaling and replication.

The total duration of the PROBONO project will be approximately five years, ending in late 2026.

With this contract, IDOM positions itself as a European benchmark in sustainable urban design, planning and rehabilitation, along with with the main European urban designers and other agents such as Cowi, Mott MacDonald, Acciona and the Green Building Council.

This project receives funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme under Grant Agreement No 101037075.

April 25, 2022


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