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August 9, 2021

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Retrofit in multi-storey buildings: new partners join Mustbe0 project

Did you know that 21% of UK dwellings are flats - representing 5.9 million homes according to BRE Group? To achieve the country’s 2050 net-zero target, any retrofit plans must consider these housing types too.

In fact, the UK, France, Germany and the Netherlands alone have 43 million apartments that are not futureproof because there is no compelling deep energy retrofit solution for these buildings available yet.

Mustbe0 is designed to deliver affordable, desirable, long-term performance guaranteed net zero energy (NZE) retrofits for apartment buildings in North West Europe. Using the Energiesprong approach, it has two main goals:

  • creating affordable, net-zero homes where people love to live; and
  • kickstarting the market for retrofitting these buildings with solution providers and suppliers focusing on developing and improving retrofit packages to drive down costs and installation times.

Pioneering multi-storey retrofit in London

Energiesprong UK is now working with three projects in different boroughs in London as demonstrator projects:

Village Park Estate, London Borough of Ealing

The London Borough of Ealing is already committed to implementing an Energiesprong retrofit project of 2-storey traditional brick houses on the Village Park Estate, which is a large post-1930 housing estate in the South Acton area of the Borough.

The Mustbe0 project will add 24 flats to this programme: 2-storey flats, with 4 flats to a block. They are large flats with a 60m2 internal floor area. This is the first time this common archetypal building has been retrofitted to the net zero standard in the UK.

London Borough of Ealing is also one of Energiesprong UK’s Innovation Partnership’s founding landlords. This project is designed to create a new approach to retrofit procurement, which will unlock up to £10bn to kickstart large-scale, whole-house retrofits for the UK social housing stock.

Treadgold House, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea

Treadgold House is a 5-storey apartment block of 38 flats on the Lancaster West Estate. The flats have an average of 57m2 internal floor area (a range of 32-75m2).

The Lancaster West Estate is situated in Notting Dale in north Kensington, London. There are 795 homes across the estate, the majority of which are flats. The tragedy of the fire at Grenfell Tower in June 2017 highlighted the need for the estate to be maintained and refurbished and for its residents to be an integral part of this process.

Resident engagement is therefore extremely important, with resident views informing decisions on the design and delivery of the refurbishment throughout. In Dec 2020, 96% voted in favour of using external wall insulation. Construction begins early in 2022, with in-depth resident engagement planned throughout the project.

London Borough of Sutton

Mustbe0 has also won additional funding to explore a new avenue to work with the London Borough of Sutton to find the best ways to make retrofitting work for leaseholders and social housing tenants with the delivery of net zero energy retrofits for 40 2-storey flats across 10 blocks. Private (leasehold) flats comprise around 30%.

The aim is to develop packages that would be attractive to private tenants and to enable housing providers to undertake net zero energy retrofits for all occupants in blocks which they own or manage.

In 2019, Energiesprong UK ran a design competition for Mustbe0 to develop new approaches for high-performance, scalable and cost-effective net zero retrofit solutions focused on apartment blocks. Discover the winners.

The European Interreg NWE “Mustbe0” project is supported by the European Union through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) for 11 million euros. Find out more about Mustbe0.