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Accueil > Projets > ALPHOUSE > Project presentation

Project presentation

AlpHouseThe project is supported by the European Union under the framework programme Interreg III-B Alpine Space, funded by ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) for a 3-year period, from September 2009.



  • The project aims at increasing the competitiveness of regional craft SMEs in the field of building renovation by combining elements of high energy performance and alpine architecture.
  • Another general objective is to increase the attractiveness of the Alpine Space via:
    • reducing of CO2 emissions of houses through top level energy efficient renovation
    • boosting the market of building renovation: increase of the rate and the energy performance of renovations


Target groups:

ThermiqueThe craft SMEs are the principal target group. They will have access to qualification modules conceived to increase their skills, as well as tools and methods. They will benefit of the increase of the regional renovation market, and be able to propose energy efficient renovation solutions. The requirement of energy performance after renovation works has to be defined.

The project targets also architects and planners, local decision makers and the general public. As planners, policy makers or general contractors, they will benefit of the project activities (qualification modules, workshops, conferences, e-tools, etc) to integrate high energy performance requirements into their renovation projects.

Project partners:

To achieve the objectives of the project a consortium of 10 partners has been arranged, whose competencies complement one another.

The structure of the partnership comprises the following levels:

  • Regional organisations of target groups/stakeholders:
    • Chamber of Trade and Crafts (HWK/DE),
    • Chambers of Industry and Commerce (NEO/FR, LBH/AT),
    • Chamber of Architects (BAK/DE),
    • Syndicate of Crafts (IGA/CH), either in conjunction with or represented by their training institutes
  • Political bodies which are 3 regional governments, represented by subdivisions focussed on alpine economy, environment, and architecture
    • Research Institute for the Ecology and the Economy Applied to Alpine Areas (IRE/IT),
    • Autonomous Region of Aosta Valley, Department of Production Activities, Department of industry, handicraft and energy, Energy Direction Service for implementation of the energy plan (VDA/IT),
    • Veneto Region - Urban Planning Department (VEN/IT),
  • Research institutes focussed on energy issues and geographical data.
    • Energy Institute Vorarlberg (EIV/AT)
    • Research Studios Austria, Technological and scientific research centre (SIS/AT)


The project partners spread over 8 regions in 5 countries. 2 potential PP in Slovenia have been enquired and visited, but were unable to participate.

Problems addressed:

  1. Reduction of CO2 emission to prevent climate change: Energy-efficient housing is a considerable contribution for all countries to reach their climate goals. Especially in mountain areas with exposed climatic conditions there is a high potential for energy saving by renovating houses at the top level of energy efficiency, by using local material and by employing regional SMEs.
  2. Loss of competitiveness of regional SMEs due to international competitors. Strengthening their competitiveness requires identifying special market segments, in which they can capitalize their advantages of small-scale production, manual labour skills and close customer relations.
  3. Preservation of cultural heritage: Traditional alpine architecture is a central factor of the attractiveness of alpine regions. The preservation of its characteristics has to go along with an adaptation to the needs of the tenants. Old and vernacular buildings will only survive by constant use, implying a high user value in aesthetics as well as in energy efficiency. Traditional alpine settlement structures contain a “vernacular intelligence” in dealing with local climatic and geographic conditions in a most effective way. These traditional structures are threatened by negligence and urban sprawl. To maintain them requires analysing their inherent principles and integrating these into current planning.


AlpHouseAlpHouse strives to develop this growing market segment of energy-efficient and style appropriate renovation of alpine old buildings for the regional SMEs, thereby addressing all 3 challenges in one holistic approach.


Work plan:

The project is structured in 5 steps:

  • ANALYSIS in 8 regions on qualification demands of SMEs, existing qualification and information services, regional specifics (architecture/cultural heritage, spatial issues/economy), and newest energy technology and its application.
  • CONCEPTION of modules of practical and classroom instruction, of digital tools and of information platform for all addressed target groups (craft enterprises/SMEs, architects/planners, and decision makers) in agreement with regional stakeholders. A special focus is on practical training methods and public information on pilot renovation sites.
  • IMPLEMENTATION of pilot qualification modules for all 3 target groups (minimum 20), partly integrated in carrying out of pilot renovations (min. 5).
  • EVALUATION and optimisation of outputs
  • TRANSFER to regional service providers, formulation of quality standards and qualification profiles to secure a sustained implementation.

Expected results:

  • Qualified professionals in the field of building renovation integrating high energy performance (levels of performance have to be defined) while respecting the alpine architecture
  • Offer of training modules dedicated to craft SMEs and architects and planners
  • Setting-up of an e-platform gathering project progress information and pedagogic materials
  • Raise awareness of decision makers and general public 
  • Enable transnational knowledge exchange between participants
  • Recommendations for House renovations at AlpHouse Standard, carried out in each region by training participants
  • Recommendations for a new job profile (Specialist for building in stock in alpine regions) and a quality label combining energy efficiency and traditional architecture


Web site:




Vincent REVOL,

Project officer


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