From abandoned manor to circular quality housing

Bologna , Italy Construction and Development, Environment and Resource efficiency


The DRIVE 0 concept is based on developing circular deep renovation solutions and supporting consumer centered business models for 7 specific study and demonstration cases as real environments. The selected cases are already in preparation and each of these cases have a specific local driver for the need of a holistic and circular deep renovation, which is translated in ‘case specific challenges and tasks’ and case specific key performance indicators. The latest demo site addition is the following case study in the rural outskirts of Bologna.


The abandoned agricultural building stock has a very strong potential, especially for social purposes (it will be used for disabled people after renovation). It’s also a typical building type with reiterate presence in different rural territories in Southern Europe and Italy. This specific case study could represent an example of building recovery and renovation and start a cycle of re-qualification of this architectural type. In the mentioned case there will not be any volumetric addition but an enhancement of the territorial rural construction with the re-use of the original materials.

Issues tackled

What will be done:

The villa consists of two floors for a total of 14 rooms and two bathrooms, at the ground floor of the barn there is a porch and a big space that are optimal for a future public use. The typical rural architectural aspect makes this case study an exceptional example of territorial architecture. The existing and territorial construction materials will be reused, respecting the traditional and regional architectural standards. The retrofit of the existing rural building stock will meet a high level of energy efficiency, based on circular use of materials and building components with high technological solutions for energy efficiency improvement. A circular deep-renovation demonstrator will be developed based on the strategy of reuse & recycle of local typical materials.


What is expected in the Italian demo site:

Case specific outcomes
– Demonstration of the effectiveness and replicability of the proposed solutions to lead to an increased rate of renovation for defined building typologies in several districts/cities/regions; the DRIVE 0 project will result in a circular deep retrofitted abandoned rural building as a demonstration of the concept.
– A life cycle zero energy circular retrofit of this building typology common in the agricultural areas based on the concept of urban mining with maximum locally re-used and recycled materials and locally based bio-based materials.
– Case specific tasks: Foster circular economy, including reusability of existing construction materials.

Case specific impact indicators:
– The Percentage of primary energy saving after renovation (measured in kWh/m2 y) is 70%
– Amount of primary saving after renovation 0,059 GWh/y
– Percentage of CO2 emissions reduction (measured in Kg/ m2 annually) is 70%