Categories
Cahors

2. The experimental rehabilitation of a demonstrator building, part of the ENERPAT SUDOE program

Summary

Located in the heart of the historic city center of Cahors, the demonstrator building was created by fusing two adjoining buildings: one older on Saint James Street, the other more recent on Petit Mot Street. These two buildings, originally built in the 13th-14th centuries, have been remodeled over time. However, they are dilapidated and have been vacant for many years.

The objective of the rehabilitation is to improve the building’s energy efficiency while preserving its historical and architectural interest. The aim is to offer a comfortable and qualitative housing for future occupants.

Reconciling a high-performance thermal renovation with the rehabilitation of a historical building requires a specific and innovative approach. The use of suitable ecological materials, targeted technical interventions to avoid altering existing structures, and the study of the hygrothermal behavior of buildings are key to the success of this project.

Once the rehabilitation has been completed, the residents will participate in the evaluation of the project by identifying any dysfunctions and suggesting improvements.

Solutions offered

The 2 joined buildings (each with 4 stages) will have a floor area of ​​approximately 300 m2. The project consists of renovating the building and creating three spaces:

– On the ground floor and the 1st floor: a tertiary space (offices). Part of this space could be dedicated to informing inhabitants about eco-renovation approaches;

– On the 2nd floor: a one-bedroom apartment that could accommodate a student or a researcher (in the field of historical preservation or energy efficiency) who would be in charge of processing the data from the monitoring system and analyzing the results.

– On the 3rd and 4th floors: a three-bedroom duplex apartment that could suit a family that wants to settle in the city center.

The approach will:

– Develop a usager-focused approach to meet the expectations and needs of future occupants. The rehabilitation will improve the quality of living conditions and adapt the housing to the needs of current lifestyles (housing functionality, additional spaces, terrace…).

– Promote the local production of eco-renovation materials. The renovation of the building will test the use of eco-materials that can be produced locally, including various times of insulating plasters (lime-hemp, lime-sand, rigid and semi-rigid wood fiber) as well as woodwork (windows, doors) made out of local wood.

– Establish “a permit to do”, in other words, to take a different approach to restoring historical buildings by transforming historical renovation regulations into assets and testing new methods or techniques.

– Improve energy efficiency while respecting and preserving historical interest. Renovations must improve the comfort of residents, significantly reduce energy consumption while preserving the historical elements that give the downtown area its charm and character.

– Improve knowledge of the thermal behavior of different building materials and constructions as well as on uses and energy management. The hygrothermal behavior as well as the energy consumption of the building will be analyzed thanks to suitable measurement sensors.

Building on the sustainable and integrated approach

Through the ENERPAT project and the rehabilitation of the demonstrator building, the Grand Cahors Agglomeration wishes to develop a regional cluster on its territory, on the theme of the rehabilitation of historic buildings. It is a collective approach that brings together various actors in the fields of vocational training, research, construction and historical preservation, among others, from the creation of the cluster to its operation.

ENERPAT is fully committed to achieving the objectives set by the Occitanie Region, which wants to become the first energy-positive region in Europe. The project is also part of the Cahors, the Heart of the Agglomeration urban strategy, whose goal is to rebuild a vibrant city center, welcoming new inhabitants and diverse economic activities in a preserved, modernized and secure environment.

Based on a participatory approach

The project is innovative in its methodology that promotes a shared approach among all stakeholders involved in construction to develop territorial value chain around the eco-renovation of historical buildings. Workshops were held before the start of the renovation with various actors (craftsmen, project manager, programmers, laboratory) to collectively select the materials to be tested. Site visits with artisans will be organized in Spring 2019.

In addition, future occupants will be involved in the project. Residents will be interviewed regularly concerning their comfort and the quality of their housing. The aim is to integrate their point of view on the ease of housing maintenance, accessibility, services, comfort (hygroscopic, acoustic).

What difference has it made? How did the result indicator shift?

The renovation is still in progress.

By combining the two small buildings, the new building will offer larger and more comfortable living spaces. The project will reconstruct a large medieval arch on the ground floor on Saint James Street to open the building on the street and bring light inside. The top floor will be an opportunity to open the living spaces onto a view of the rooftops of Cahors.

Why should other EU cities use it?

The aim of the ENERPAT project is to propose a set of recommendations for eco-renovation techniques and energy-efficient materials that are both architecturally and economically adapted to the renovation of residential buildings in historic centers.

The results of this project, as well as the recommendations that will be made following the experiments, will be communicated in order to promote their replication. The cities of the SUDOE space (South West Europe), confronted with the same heritage issues as Cahors, Vitoria and Porto, may be interested in carrying out similar experimentation and renovation procedures.

Key Facts and Figures:

Start and end dates of case example: September 2018 to summer 2019.

Date of preparation of this case example: 2018

Who prepared the case example: ENERPAT local technical team – Grand Cahors Agglomeration

Budget:

Public aids allows the project to be financed up to 80%

Extra information and hyperlinks

https://www.ladepeche.fr/article/2018/10/22/2893050-une-maison-experimentale-de-l-eco-renovation.html

https://www.ladepeche.fr/article/2018/06/04/2810680-un-chantier-test-en-matiere-d-eco-restauration.html

https://www.ladepeche.fr/article/2018/01/31/2732304-cahors-leader-d-un-projet-sur-l-eco-restauration.html
Categories
Cahors

1. The regeneration of 72 Château-du-Roi Street

Summary

Château-du-Roi Street is the laboratory for the urban development public project: ‘Cahors, the Heart of the Agglomeration Strategy’. Here are tested all the policies implemented in this framework, before being used in other City neighbourhoods or in the smaller towns of the Grand Cahors Agglomeration.

The 72 on Château-du-Roi Street is a very old building in a medieval neighbourhood. Till now, it was divided into eight very small apartments, many of them vacant, very uncomfortable and unsanitary, even dangerous.

The City of Cahors and its agglomeration set up very proactive policies to support the restoration of built heritage in priority neighbourhoods, including Château-du-Roi Street. As a result, the building was bought by the city by the power of eminent domain and then sold to a private investor.

The new owner of the building started the restoration work last June. The plan is to create three apartments for families with terrace (by merging the existing apartments) and a space on the ground floor for activities (shop, association, artisans…). Thanks to the Cahors ULG workshops in springtime, the owner updated her first rehab project and decided to reopen the façade instead of keeping it closed to the street, in order to bring light (and life!) back to this narrow street.

Solutions offered

The first point is the way public policies facilitated the sale and restoration of 72 Château du Roi Street to buy: financial support, technical support/expertise thanks to the Heritage Department of Cahors. In addition to supporting building restoration, the policy also helped fight vacancy and adapt existing apartments to the needs of modern families. Financial support is provided by several public administrations and is broken down as follows:

  • Eco restoration: Occitanie Region and Grand Cahors Agglomeration (Enerpat)
  • Facades restoration support: city of Cahors, Lot Department and Occitanie Region
  • Fight against housing vacancy: city of Cahors
  • Moderate rent housing: ANAH (national agency for housing)

The second point is the impact of the ULG’s work on the evolution of the restoration project, from a closed façade to an opened façade, opened on the street, allowing the visitors (tourists and inhabitants) to peek into the historical courtyard. The patrimonial prescription imposed the reopening of the two arches on the ground floor, the restoration of the Renaissance crossing on the first floor and the demolition of a small building in the courtyard. Misunderstood at first, the ULG meetings and exchanges led the owner to change her project and understand the need to move from a closed facade to an opened facade on the street, allowing visitors (tourists and locals) to throw a glance in the historic courtyard.

This private project is fuelling the dynamic of revitalisation undertaken on the street.

Building on the sustainable and integrated approach

To make its policies efficient, the city has also to elaborate a transversal approach to mobilise financial supports between its partners. The city can then support private projects with public projects (new highlighting of the street, green spaces, new road…). For example, it allowed the city helping the owner of 72 to use natural / bio-sourced materials to restore her building.

Cahors’ ULG is the main stakeholder of the project to revitalise the Château-du-Roi Street. With this group, the City is experimenting its way to work with users of the city and to build better public (and private) projects. The main aim is to build then reinforce the participative approach for future projects, to involve all concerned users in order to build projects that respond to concrete needs and demonstrate uses.

Based on a participatory approach

The private investor is member of the ULG; she’s restoring a building but she’s not a resident of the street. The approach we implemented with our ULG in the Château-du-Roi Street allowed her to adapt and update her project. She welcomed a visit with the ULG members (journalists came too: the city used this project as an example of good practice). Workshops and exchanges in the ULG highlighted the need to increase luminosity in the street and of bringing back activities and communication through the street, buildings, inhabitants and users of the street (tourists, students, etc.). Related to this conclusion, she decided to reopen the façade on the street.

What difference has it made? How did the result indicator shift?

Work is still in progress, but you can already see the difference between the building before and the building now. The building is recovering its original shape and its medieval arches.

More difficult to evaluate, the way citizens reuse the street now. The building was opened for public visits during European Heritage Days last September. It has been a real success.

Why should other EU cities use it?

To sustain the restoration of built heritage in mid-sized cities which don’t have a lot of means, it is very useful to identify then prioritise the buildings or the streets or the neighbourhoods concerned by public aids, to be able with financial partners to concentrate all resources in the same place(s).

Participative approaches are a very useful way to share public projects with stakeholders, but also to allow private investors to share their projects. It is an opportunity to change the way people look at dis-invested places by allowing them to better know and appropriate the heritage of the place. By making them contribute to a project, collective approaches make people proud of their living environment and they become more easily stakeholders of projects driven by our cities.

Key Facts and Figures:

Start and end dates of case example: From June 2018 to summer 2019.

Date of preparation of this case example: Autumn 2018

Who prepared the case example: Int Herit local technical team – City of Cahors & Grand Cahors Agglomeration

Budget:

Public aids allows the project to be financed up to 60% (see point 3)

Extra information and hyperlinks

http://www.mairie-cahors.fr/cahors/presse/dp/2018/DP-chantier-Bat-rehabilitation.pdf

https://actu.fr/occitanie/cahors_46042/cahors-immeuble-xv-siecle-se-revele-rue-chateau-roi_17701949.html

https://actu.fr/occitanie/cahors_46042/urbanisme-devenir-la-rue-chateau-roi-cahors_16013283.html

https://www.ladepeche.fr/article/2018/07/06/2831768-rue-chateau-roi-batisse-insalubre-renait-joyau-medieval.html

The video about the regeneration of 72 Château du Roi Street