Title : Systemic Integration of Transformative Technical and Nature-based Solutions to Improve Climate Neutrality of European Cities and Regions and tackle Climate Change: the URBreath Approach

Acronym : URBREATH

Funding program : Horizon Europe


Type of Project  : HORIZON-IA

Project Code : 101139711

Project budget : 14 156 810.0 EUR

Lead Applicant  : The Lisbon Council for Economic Competitiveness

Project duration : 48 months (01.01.2024 – 31.12.2027)

The project in brief

URBREATH vision is to develop, implement, demonstrate, validate and replicate a comprehensive, community participation and NBS- driven urban revitalization, resilience and climate neutrality paradigm that will ultimately radically enhance the social interactions, inclusion, equitability and livability in cities. Specifically, the aim of the URBREATH project is to implement hybrid/Natural Base Solutions putting at the heart of the decision-making process the communities within a city. Advanced techniques, particularly Local Digital Twins and AI, and social innovation will facilitate the achievement of its vision. The project will have four phases: 1. Inception, 2. Development, 3. Piloting, 4. Transition. The preliminary results of a single Phase are evaluated within the following Phase so to allow for feedback before releasing the final version. The Inception phase will define the methodology to be followed for the project development and will deliver the project functional and technical requirements. The second phase will release the URBREATH technical framework, consisting of tools to manage the whole data value chain and to support end-users to collaborate on the design and creation of NBS to be used in the city/district. It will be used to monitor and take decisions on the NBS to be implemented/ deployed in the Piloting phase (evidence-based decision making), that involves 4 Front Runner Cities in 4 different climatic zones: Cluj-Napoca (RO – Continental), Leuven (BE – Atlantic), Madrid (ES – Mediterranean), and Tallin (EE – Boreal).

During the Transition phase, all the information, results and lessons learnt from the previous steps will be collected and analyzed to provide recommendations and foster replication activities and the uptake of project outputs at the end of its lifespan. To this aim, 5 Follower Cities are involved: Aarhus (DK), Athens (EL), Kajaani (FI), Parma (IT), Pilsen (CZ), linked to the Front Runners for climatic zone and/or dimension.

URBREATH will accomplish the following 9 objectives:

  1. Creation of a Stakeholders Group under the concept of the Living Labs (LL), identifying end-users’ needs and defining requirements for feasible restoration/regeneration measures based on local needs, policy, climate and hazards analysis.
  2. Establish the necessary ICT tools, methods and participatory processes for increased stakeholder participation and wider public (including residents/citizens) participated decision making processes
  3. Establish innovative cooperative organisational models ensuring project sustainability and aiming towards systemic adoption of solutions (NBS and hybrid solutions at core) for urban regeneration and climate neutrality
  4. Develop and demonstrate efficient and effective services, models and tools for quantitative impact assessment of the climate effects towards climate neutrality, regeneration & adaptation planning
  5. Develop and deploy innovative clustering of NBS and hybrid approaches, for enhancement of synergy effects of interventions with more effective functionalities towards improved urban/local climate neutrality, resilience and regeneration
  6. Develop an assessment framework for evidence-based evaluation of NBS (URBREATH approach) via extensive monitoring of deployed solutions in the four FRs in different European geographical and climatic regions towards optimised future deployments and increased systemic adoption
  7. Replication of the URBREATH methodology and tools through mentoring and coaching in FLCs
  8. Support the adoption of the sustainable URBREATH solutions for the urban/regional planning -for regeneration, resilience and climate neutrality- through extensive public awareness and dissemination activities
  9. Develop novel business models and strategies for regional climate resilience enhancement

URBASOFIA will have the main responsibility of co-coordinating the Pilot demonstration case in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, which will focus on the Somes River Blue-Green Corridor, deploying NBS, socio-economic facilities and zero-emissions mobility solutions along the Blue-Green corridor of the Someș River – IRIS Neighbourhood. We are contributing to the delivery of the systemic transformation methodology and corresponding metrics (WP2), the co-creation and implementation of NBS scenarios in selected urban areas (WP5 and WP6), and the provision of intensive and de-risking support to FLC (WP7), dissemination and exploitation of project activities (WP8).