business cases

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Climate proofing with unifying solutions

The “Merwedekanaalzone” project is transforming a business terrain to provide six to ten thousand new homes. The current terrain is owned by six parties - a mix of publicly-owned and privately-owned plots. 

One of the main goals of the Merwedekanaalzone is to create an sustainable, green and climate proof area. However, this means that some plots owned by private parties will be used for recreation areas, and some for buildings. The success and business-case challenge lies in the distribution of costs among the individual parties. 

To ensure that it develops into a unified development project, the Utrecht region chose to include a design studio in an early phase to sketch possible scenarios. The visualization of the ambitions made it easier for the different parties to embrace them. 

Related resources (in Dutch)

Read about the latest developments of the 'Merwedekanaalzone'.

The renovation report of the 'Kanaleneiland' neighbourhood shows how a climate-resilient approach was adopted in the development of better housing.

A short video shows the plans for the Merwedekanaalzone

Renovation work as fuel for reinvention

Building codes are often the governing instrument for planning choices made in significant renovation projects. However, in doing so an opportunity is missed. Renovation projects offer the unique chance to climate-proof existing areas, and in doing so to address issues surrounding water and energy management, to improve quality of life and increase the economic value of the area. 

In the renovation of the “Kanaleneiland” neighbourhood, public parties as the Province, Water Board and Municipality and the housing corporation Mitros has joined

forces to give the climate-proofing of Utrecht a boost. The approach is to investigate the feasibility of climate measurements combined with the renovation of buildings and the connected public space. 

Realizing green roofs in combination with solar panels without expensive construction measurements offer an interesting business case. Combining renovation of buildings and public space with climate proof measurements increase the financial and social value of the area, thus completing the business case.

In Brief

Four opportunities for climate-friendly renovation



Green roofs: green roofs can aid in reducing heat stress and aid in water drainage. When creating plans, success is ensured by consulting a construction expert in an early phase to see which options are possible for the existing roof constructions.



Rainwater drainage: rainwater can be utilized for other purposes by separating it from waste water.



Reinstate green areas: development of green spaces and corridors can boost urban ventilation, quality of life and biodiversity in the landscape.



Transform gardens: stimulating residents to create greener gardens with less tiles can significantly affect an area’s ability to absorb excess water.

business cases

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