Mild Home: Building affordable, energy efficient homes and villages

Partners from seven countries have joined forces to develop workable plans for energy efficient homes and an eco-village concept that can cater for the needs of medium and low income families. The Mild Home project also demanded the use of local materials and suppliers.

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The project partners have been developing plans for energy efficient homes and an eco-village.  © Unioncamere del Veneto The project partners have been developing plans for energy efficient homes and an eco-village. © Unioncamere del Veneto

" We teamed up with peers from southeast Europe to develop an innovative model for affordable, energy efficient residential buildings. The results of the project exceeded our expectations and gave us a valuable transnational perspective. It allowed us to involve the private sector in the realisation of four houses that will be rented at 50 % of their market value to low income citizens. "

Municipality of Castelnuovo

A Mild Home residence must offer near-zero energy use and be built using resource efficient building techniques. The consortium sought to encourage the building of such homes in Eco-Green Villages (EGV), where energy efficiency and sustainability could be applied on a greater scale.

The feasibility of the project was proven through a market analysis carried out in eight European provinces. Local people, public authorities, materials suppliers, construction firms, architects and energy auditors were among those consulted as the project fined-tuned its plans.

A community based approach

Based on this analysis, the project launched a design competition for the construction of the homes in five pilot EGV locations and was enthusiastically embraced by architects, engineers and university graduates who generated more than 100 ideas which met the Mild Home criteria.

Another key project goal was to create local supply chains for the construction of energy efficient buildings. The consortium organised training sessions on applying the Mild Home building techniques, which were attended by more than 170 professionals from the fields of engineering, planning, architecture, real estate and ecology.

Leading by example

On the back of all this groundwork, the consortium was able to begin investment plans for all five EGV pilots. At Castelnuovo Rangone public procurement procedures have been launched for the construction of an EGV. In Strem, agreements have been signed with architects and engineers to begin work on the eco-village.

A technical and feasibility study for EGV construction has been conducted at Savski Venac, and the municipality of Feltre has introduced project concepts into its Sustainable Energy Action Plan. Meanwhile, in Sofia, the local authority is looking to move forward by using EU funding available in the 2014-2020 programming period.

In addition, the Mild Home and EGV concepts can easily be adapted to the needs of other European regions and communities. In fact, two additional Italian municipalities have started planning their own eco-villages after learning about this project.

Total investment and EU funding

Total investment for the project “Mild Home” is EUR 1 674 178, of which the EU’s European Regional Development Fund is contributing EUR 1 423 050 from the Operational Programme “'South East Europe (SEE)” for the 2007 to 2013 programming period.

Draft date

12/10/2015