Flanders is introducing the Digital Twin ‘wijkrenovatietool’


To further increase the pace of renovation, the Flemish government has committed to a digital twin ‘wijkrenovatietool’. With this tool, the renovation needs of entire districts can be mapped digitally in one go. Then specific advice can be given per residence, linked to a guaranteed follow-up. The tool will run on a new digital platform that will be developed by EnergyVille / VITO as an assignment of the Flemish Government.

Global warming on one hand, and the energy crisis on the other, create the need to accelerate the renovation of our aging housing heritage. Therefore, Flemish minister Bart Somers developed the Local Energy and Climate Pact (LEKP), within which an important focus lies on collective renovations. Within this pact, the participating local governments committed to organizing climate tables that bring citizens together around the energetic transformation of their district.

A major barrier to renovation is the time and effort it takes to figure everything out. I want to unburden people and neighborhoods as much as possible by starting up collective trajectories to scale up the renovation wave. With climate tables and the wijkrenovatietool, local governments can work citizen by citizen, district by district. Climate tables bring districts together and allow citizens to map out a renovation path together. The district renovation tool will provide customized renovation trajectories for each property in a district coupled with a cost-benefit analysis. This will accelerate implementation and reduce costs.. – Bart Somers, Minister for Home affairs.

The Digital Twin wijkrenovatietool will run on a digital platform that will be developed by EnergyVille / VITO, making maximum use of existing Digital Twin building blocks and standards. Through this platform, the tool makes use of housing stock data and public data sources. On top of that, one can simulate what economies of scale can be generated by a collective approach.

It is clear that collective district renovations offer enormous potential for the Flemish people. This can get an enormous boost through digitization. But to archieve this, there is still a need for cooperation, research and innovation. Flanders is at the European top in terms of innovation, so we can use a Flemish knowledge institution such as EnergyVille / VITO to accelerate these developments. This ensures that we can help local authorities and the Flemish people to renovate their homes more quickly for more comfort and lower energy costs. – Jo Brouns, Flemish Minister of Innovation.

The challenge of making our Flemish homes and districts climate neutral is enormous. With the Digital Twin, we can make the difference by unlocking all available data and making it available to the ecosystem of actors in the renovation sector – from energy auditors to contractors, and from IT software companies to ESCO’s. This should allow accurate advice to be obtained even faster via smart algorithms for individual homes and collective solutions. This will make a renovation process more efficient and faster for everyone: citizens, local authorities and companies.Dirk Fransaer, Managing Director VITO

In addition, the Energy Houses can also provide data. Initially, the tool will be used by local governments and the Energy Houses. They will analyze in different districts how much a renovation trajectory costs, what it generates, and inform citizens. A collaboration between local governments, the Energy Houses and their partners will ensure the follow-up of these trajectories.

Flanders has the second-best renovation strategy in Europe. In the current structural energy crisis, the Flemish government is therefore opting for a structural solution. We encourage people to insulate and renovate their homes with the -Mijn Verbouwpremie- and the interest-free -Mijn Verbouwlening-. In this way, the Flemish people will see their energy bills decrease in the long term. This new tool will help bring that renovation strategy optimally up to cruising speed.Zuhal Demir, Flemish Minister of Energy

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