Task 63
Task 63
SHC Task 63

Solar Neighborhood Planning

Project (Task) Objectives

The main objective of Task 63 is to support developers, property owners/associations, architects, urban planners, municipalities, institutions, and other key players to achieve solar neighborhoods that support long-term solar access for energy production and for daylighting buildings and outdoor environments – resulting in sustainable and healthy environments.

The types of support being developed in this Task include strategies for the design of new and existing communities with focus on solar energy, comprising methods to secure sunlight access (right to light). Furthermore, the Task aims to focus on economic strategies and business models for better use of passive and active solar energy. Apart from economic values, added values or co-benefits of solar energy are considered. Another objective is to study the workflow of tools needed to support decisions in all planning stages (tool chain). Finally, case studies in each participating country will be a central part to bind close ties to practice and implementation.

To achieve these objectives, work is needed on four main topics:

  1. Solar planning strategies and concepts for achieving net zero energy/emission neighborhoods.
  2. Economic strategies, including added values and stakeholder engagement.
  3. Solar planning tools for new and existing neighborhoods.
  4. Case studies and stories, to test Task developments in dialogue with key players, implement and disseminate.

Task 63 will require a dialogue and cooperation with key players in neighborhood planning in each participating country. These include developers, real estate owners, architects, consultants, urban planners, municipalities, and other institutions. This cooperation gives the possibility to identify barriers, and test strategies, methods and tools to get feedback on development needs. In addition, case studies and lessons learnt will be documented to show inspiring examples of solar neighborhoods. Local collaborations within municipalities are an important part that complements the international cooperation within the Task and links Task experts with the practice and implementation in each country.

The main objectives of the Task are subdivided into four key areas and involve:

A: Solar planning strategies and concepts

  • Review existing concepts and targets that underlie neighborhood design, both new and existing.
  • Develop (criteria for) the design of representative archetypes/prototypes in existing and new neighborhoods (e.g. spatial design and building design - types of buildings, mixes of buildings, density, open space -, passive solar design potential, various active solar strategies and technologies, synergies and conflicts with other potential usages – in connection with Subtask B).
  • Develop and test planning strategies and concepts for increased solar energy capture and utilization in neighborhoods, in view of achieving net zero energy (NZE), net zero carbon (NZC) status or other goals in the era of low-carbon energy transition.
  • Recommend strategies and concepts for conceptual design of new and existing neighborhoods.
  • Give a common definition/concept of urban surface usages relating to functions (e.g. energy production, microclimate regulation, permeability of surface, etc.) and materials (e.g. solar thermal panels, PV panels, green areas/facades/roofs, water, cool/reflective materials, etc.).

B: Economic strategies and stakeholder engagement

  • Identify and describe conflicts and synergies of the different and potential usages of urban surfaces, with specific relevance to solar energy harvest.
  • Identify financial mechanisms and suggest ways to finance the transition, moving from energy market to added value services.
  • Develop a method to propose and assess alternative scenarios for urban surface usages.
  • Identify the potential co-benefits related to the hybrid or/and integrated usage of urban surface, apart from the solar energy production.
  • Analyse the potential integration of the Task outputs for the New Urban Agenda implementation.
  • Recommend suitable activities for stakeholder engagement/nudging strategies, and integrate the lessons learnt in the urban planning practice.

C: Solar planning tools

  • Identify the current solar planning tool workflows and related tools used by key actors for planning solar neighborhoods. This could include tools from all platforms (GIS, CAD, or BIM). Analyse the strengths, weaknesses and development needs.
  • Identify relevant common indicators synthetizing solar energy and daylight performance of neighborhoods, to be used in a summary dashboard for easy comparison.
  • Develop a roadmap for improved workflows and solar planning tools needed in all planning stages (tool chain).

D: Case studies

  • Coordinate and collect case studies across subtask topics.
  • Serve as a platform for exchange of experiences from practice, including testing strategies and tools and interview stakeholders.
  • Describe and disseminate case studies and stories of new and existing solar neighborhoods.