RENEWnow - New impulses for the highly efficient energetic renovation of multi-storey buildings and districts

Exploration of an innovative approach for the highly efficient renovation of apartment buildings in Austria. The aim is to develop a new service model (one-stop shop) for property managers and owner associations through a targeted, novel mix of technical and non-technical measures.

Short Description



Starting point / motivation

Although technical solutions for the renovation of multi-story residential buildings (in relation to window replacement, thermal insulation with thermal insulation composite systems) and for boiler replacement in central energy supply concepts already exist, the renovation rate has been stagnating at a low level for years (well below 1% of the building stock). This means that the ambitious climate protection goals in the building sector cannot be nearly achieved.

The reasons for the low renovation activities are manifold. With the currently usual renovation processes, techniques and costs and the very low prices for fossil fuels and electricity, the reserves from the monthly operating cost bills for property managers are not sufficient, which is why extensive renovations are only feasible if rental fees are increased significantly. A disadvantage and also wrong in terms of both economics and business management is that costs are not accounted for over the life cycle of the building.

At the same time, conventional renovation processes and techniques are very time-consuming and require months of work on site, including the use of scaffolding or even temporary relocation of the residents. Other obstacles include distributed owner structures, complex organizational and implementation processes as well as all questions regarding the assumption of risk with regard to implementation quality and energy savings (usually lies with the property management or ultimately with the apartment owner or tenant).

Contents and goals

In order to achieve a significantly higher renovation rate, services must be offered that significantly simplify the renovation process for property managers and owners' representatives. Business models, similar to the Dutch concept of Stroomversnelling (or internationally better known as Energiesprong), which offers highly efficient renovation from a single source for single-family houses, are urgently needed. For multi-story residential buildings, this could be so-called one-stop shops that are similar to general contractors, but with significantly expanded responsibilities.

At the same time, completely new renovation processes are required, which merge construction and building systems with energy conversion based on renewable energy sources and at the same time enable a considerable reduction in costs while increasing the quality of renovation through standardization and industrial prefabrication.


This exploratory project aims to define and analyze a new approach for the highly efficient renovation of multi-story buildings in Austria. This approach has the potential to mobilize the renovation market and to increase the renovation rate by 3 to 5 times from currently less than 1%.

By means of a targeted, novel combination of technical (modular and scalable building technology systems, multifunctional building components, modular construction and standardization, industrial prefabrication) and non-technical measures, a new service model (one-stop shop) for property managers and owners is to be developed and to be explored involving leading players in the industry.

The service model addresses the issues of overall organization, contract creation, planning, financing, implementation, operational management, accounting, comfort responsibility as well as the risk in terms of implementation quality and savings achieved in a comprehensive and responsible manner.

The integration of renewable energy sources, so-called "tenant electricity models" at the building or district level as well as the interaction with higher-level energy networks make significant contributions on the way to plus energy districts.

Expected results

At the end of the exploration, clear recommendations for action should be given for the implementation of the exploratory results in order to allow a rapid and broad market launch.

Project Partners

Project management

AEE INTEC (AEE - Institute for Sustainable Technologies)

Project or cooperation partners

  • University of Innsbruck
  • Nussmüller Architects ZT
  • TBH Ingenieur GmbH
  • Stroomversnelling
  • Energieinstitut Vorarlberg

Contact Address

AEE INTEC (AEE - Institute for Sustainable Technologies)
DI Armin Knotzer
Feldgasse 19
A-8200 Gleisdorf
Tel.: +43 (3112) 5886-369