Alba Iulia an historic city for energy efficiency

 

The European project 3ENCULT aims to bring to the foreground the historical heritage of Italian and European cities, as the recipient of potential energy-efficiency measures. So this a bit a challenge, because as we know by the energy regulations, not least those on the certification, it is possible to exclude buildings with art’s characteristics and historicity, in which appeared problematic energy purposes’ renovations, without irreversibly damaging the authenticity, in some cases the universality of the heritage’s values. There are those who immediately countered to show that even in historic buildings it is possible to pursue the energy efficiency at the level of individual buildings and further, at the level of city centers to reduce CO2 emissions. The project started in Italy, coordinated by ICLEI and EURAC of Bolzano and had the final workshop in Romania, Alba Iulia. It ‘ was a real discovery to know this city, through the lens of those who, as architects and contractors offer renovation projects. In general, also the Romania capital, Bucharest, is undergoing a phase of urban regeneration. Within a few years, the city center has been refurbished and has changed a lot, not to mention the attractiveness of the housing market, which continues to draw foreign investors. Alba Iulia is a perfect example of a fortified citadel, immaculately maintained. Imagine a city where at some point we cross the street to enter another dimension: that of the historic city, no cars circulating, excluding those parked by bars and hotels’ providers. Not a sound. He seemed to have returned to the magical outlook we have drawn so much as students, at the University. The city is maintained and decorated perfectly, there are no commercial signs spoiling her beauty. All private areas are facing inward, while outdoor space is equipped with bronze sculptures, tracing the citadel’s daily history, not only the official. The citadel is a succession of layers, from Roman age, that still preserves hidden tracks that are continuing to bring to light, with archaeological excavations, to the medieval age, to finish with the Vauban style. This style between baroque and neoclassical is not present in Italy and western Europe, while it is much in Eastern Europe, and favors the tones of yellow ocher and cream. The different boundary walls are connected by pedestrian walkways that let introduce you in the city. Returning to 3EN CULT project, even in Alba Iulia, as in Bologna, there have been exchanges with local stakeholders who are implementing these theories. It has been said that it is very difficult to involve private entrepreneurs but overall there have been positive results, and participants have been able to test new software and technologies, as well as renewable ones who became a race to integrate into the historic centers. The monitoring, usually avoided because no one wants to follow it, in the European projects’ case, works and gives good results comparable between the network’s participants. In Italy, these data are compared with mitigation CO2 abatement’s policies, the SEAP proposal, at the base of the Covenant of Mayors’ implementation. The only criticism is what is about the real contribution of these projects to climate change strategies of adaptation. By present coordinators’ admission, data projections of climate change have not been used, and also their direct consequences on heritage. Only data pertaining to the present climate has been considered, in order to size renewable sources’ panels. However, this project generated awareness between stakeholders, and projects like this will be financed in the long run, and maybe they will be able to produce finally valid indicators for the challenges against climate change.

Carolina Collaro

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About carolinacollaro

Carolina Collaro is an architect and teacher, Master in Territorial Planning and Real Estate at Turin Polytechnic, Italy, since more than ten years involved in research and education’s field for sustainable development at the global and local scale. She has a strong background in this field at international level, acquired in prestigious universities: such as the EPFL and the University of Louvain-la-Neuve, as well as in U.S. and France. Visiting scholar at the Institute for advanced studies on science technology and society in Graz Austria, she is PhD candidate at Nova Gorica University, in Economics and Techniques of Environmental and Architectural Heritage Conservation, a post graduated program with IUAV-Venice University, Italy. The core of her researches is the adaptation strategies to climate change and ecosystem services’ conservation’s relevance for cultural landscapes and protected areas. She collaborates with UNISCAPE, Universities’ consortium for European Landscape Convention Implementation, and IUCN-CEM Commissions.
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