Driven by the goal ‘twice as good’ as an ordinary development, Hammarby Sjöstad is a brownfield development in a waterfront area in the City of Stockholm which strives for low environmental impact and decreased energy consumption. The planning process began in 1996 and the area is still under development. During these years Hammarby Sjöstad became internationally known and today the development is used as a model for other large-scale sustainability projects.
The concept ‘closed-loop urban metabolism’ lies in the centre of the Hammarby Model. This concept implies a holistic approach that includes energy, materials, water and sewage, waste and transport. For example, solar energy generated in the district is converted into electric power or used to heat water; burnable waste is used to generate district heating and electricity and biofuel is extracted out of food waste and combusted for public transportation.
The 204 hectare area includes 12 000 apartments and 20 000 workplaces and is connected to the surroundings by multiple modes of transit (trams, buses, boats). This creates the conditions to reduce car commuting. Private car ownership is discouraged by the limited number of parking spaces (0.7 per dwelling) and by the end of 2018 the district will have 500 charging points for electric cars.
An information centre, GlashusEtt (Glass House One in English), was established to communicate with the citizens about how they can contribute to the environmental goals of the area. Besides, informing and educating residents about environmental issues, the GlashusEtt also welcomes students interested in environmental stewardship, and international delegations seeking to learn about the implementation of sustainable solutions in urban development.
In 2012, a group of residents launched the program ‘Hammarby Sjöstad 2.0’ which includes the innovation platform ElectriCITY. In this platform 35 enterprises, research institutes, the City of Stockholm and NGOs work together to deliver solutions for smart and renewable energy buildings, electric vehicles, circular economy in waste management, water management and improve the communication among the people who live in the area.
In 2018, Hammarby Sjöstad is home to 25 000 people and it is a thriving Stockholm neighbourhood.
Although the initial targets for energy consumption within the district have not been met (60 kWh/m2 year), the energy usage is around 35-40% lower than the Swedish average. Research indicates that implementing advanced technology (e.g. 2-generations of solar panels, shifting from fossil to electric cars and drilling for geo thermal heating) the energy consumption may sink another 20%. The program Hammarby Sjöstad 2.0 also demonstrates the district’s ongoing commitment towards the implementation of sustainable solutions.
Hammarby Sjöstad is a pioneer project and the lessons learned continue to inspire developments around the world. Many solutions employed in the district (e.g. automatic waste collection system and recycling principles) are now employed consistently in urban development across Stockholm.
As an ‘urban living lab’ the district has received a great number of visitors from all over the world.
Visits to GlashusEtt, can be booked: here