Increasing the energy efficiency of the housing stock has been one of the largest challenges of the built environment in the Netherlands in recent decades. Parallel with the energy transition there is an ongoing revaluation of the architectural quality of pre-war residential buildings. In the past, urban renewal was traditionally based on demolition and replacement with new buildings. This has changed to the improvement of old buildings through renovation. Housing corporations developed an approach for the deep renovation of their housing stock in the period 1995–2015. The motivation to renovate buildings varied, but the joint pattern that emerged was quality improvement of housing in cities, focusing particularly on energy efficiency, according to project data files from the NRP institute (Platform voor Transformatie en Renovatie). However, since 2015 the data from the federation of Amsterdam-based housing associations AFWC (Amsterdamse Federatie Woningcorporaties) has shown the transformation of pre-war walk-up apartment buildings has stagnated. The sales of units are slowing down, except in pre-war neighbourhoods. Housing associations have sold their affordable housing stock of pre-war property in Amsterdam inside the city’s ring road. The sales revenue was used to build new affordable housing far beyond the ring road. This study highlights the profound influence of increasing requirements established by the European Energy Performance of Building Directive (EPBD) and the revised Housing Act of 1 July 2015, for the renovation of the pre-war housing stock. The transformation process to climate-neutral neighbourhoods inside the ring road is slowing down because of new property owners, making a collective heat network difficult to realize; furthermore, segregation of residents is appearing in Amsterdam.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2590
Number of pages23
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2019

    Research areas

  • walk-up apartment building, pre-war, Amsterdam, energy efficiency, gentrification, segregation

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