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With 80% of European citizens living in urban areas, cities have a crucial role to play in the transition towards a low-carbon economy. Faced with the challenge of ensuring the quality of life of their citizens while becoming more energy efficient, cities must look at the system level and deviseintegrated urban development strategies that will make them both sustainable and better places to live.
SINFONIA aims at validating a comprehensive, interdisciplinary, refurbished city district model where the potential for scalability and replication by middle-sized European cities is built and validated during demonstration, based on energy technologies deployed by the two pioneer cities. This model emphasizes the role of an innovative integrated energy system approach, linking energy efficiency and CO2 reduction. In that perspective this project embraces the EU's growth strategy for the coming decade, Europe 2020, to endorse “a smart, sustainable and inclusive economy”.
At the heart of the initiative is a unique cooperation between the cities of Bolzano (IT) and Innsbruck (AT), working hand in hand to achieve 40 to 50% primary energy savings and increase the share of renewables by 20% in two pioneer districts. To further ensure their scalability and transferability, the models and typologies adopted will be tested and validated with all stakeholders involved – public and private, from citizens to energy regulators – not only in Innsbruck and Bolzano, but also in five ‘early adopter’ cities which are actively participating in the project including: Pafos (CY), Rosenheim (DE), Seville (ES), La Rochelle (FR)and Borås (SE).