The Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST) is coordinating the four-year Horizon Europe funded research programme, REGENeration of neighbourhoods towards a low-carbon, inclusive, and affordable built environment. The project was publicly launched on 31 January 2024 in Beckerich, which will serve as a testbed for the project while benefitting from the developments.
With a grant of 7.5 million euros from Horizon Europe, of which 2.6 million euros are allocated to Luxembourg players including LIST, REGEN aims to bring about a paradigm shift in urban development towards environmental sustainability, economic revitalization, and social inclusion.
Sylvain Kubicki, Lead Research and Innovation Associate at LIST, stated:
"Our Built Environment, i.e., the human-made surroundings that provide the setting for human activity, lays a critical role in climate breakdown, but through restorative and regenerative approaches, we can turn it into part of the solution to the climate crisis. REGEN will leverage participative urban planning, digital innovation, and holistic methodologies to drive positive change in our neighbourhoods."
The REGEN project will introduce a comprehensive methodology and framework called the Assessment Framework for Urban Regeneration. This framework will validate a catalogue of 50 urban regeneration interventions, estimating their revitalization potential, and monitoring their progress using digital twins and sustainability analysis methodologies. Importantly, REGEN will prioritize the involvement of end-users and stakeholders through citizen science, participative design approaches, and living labs.
In Luxembourg, the town of Beckerich will serve as a testbed for the project, with LIST utilizing its participative technology, Managing Urban Spaces Together (MUST), to engage citizens and stakeholders in the urban planning process. This initiative, previously funded by the Luxembourg National Research Fund (FNR), aims to strengthen citizen involvement. It will be applied to key issues such as circularity in the construction sector and the energy sector (studies are planned on the Beckerich heating network).
REGEN will implement its solutions in four demonstration sites, continuously monitoring the energy, mobility, and circularity of individual buildings, streets, and districts. The project will upscale its findings to the city level, informing key policy directions and contributing to the broader transition towards sustainable urban development.
REGEN has received support from the European Commission's Horizon Europe programme. Its partners will be given financial support to develop their research and innovation activities, and are committed to contributing in return to facilitating the implementation of European policies on sustainable development, economic revitalisation and social inclusion in the building and urban development sector.
Sylvain Kubicki said:
"LIST is committed to leveraging Luxembourg's expertise and value chains to drive sustainable urban regeneration. Through REGEN, we aim to empower communities, inform policy orientations, and pave the way for broader deployment of sustainable urban interventions."
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