The Dutch municipality of Hoogeveen is developing a new location with 80 houses at the west side of the city of Hoogeveen; Nijstad-Oost. With this development, the municipality wants to contribute to the energy transition in the Netherlands, especially focused on building new houses which do not require naturals gas as its main resource for heating. With it arises a unique opportunity in which this project is an important link.
The goal of this project is to deliver a (techno-economic) blueprint and corresponding technology concept for the heat supply of the 80 houses in Nijstad-Oost on 100% hydrogen (H2), based on operating with a hydrogen central heating boiler. Finally, this blueprint and technology must be transferable and scalable for existing residential areas in the Netherlands. Besides the nationwide reduction of natural gas use, market opportunities are being created for the involved parties. There are also other topics and aspects included in the blueprint besides the technological developments, such as the social business case, sourcing strategy and the support amongst the residents. This approach will be set off with other hydrogen related solutions (fuel cells, local heat network, etc.), in order to gain insight on the pro's and cons of the blueprint and accompanying solutions.
This project does not stand on its own, Nijstad-Oost is a demonstration project which serves as a pilot and an accelerant for the application of hydrogen in the built environment.
The reason the project does not immediately start with converting and retrofitting existing buildings, is because of the fact that it wants to begin from a green meadow in order to create an organized and controlled environment which is comparable with the already existing built environment (in terms of infrastructure and equipment). From this controlled environment we want to create a sense of security and acceptance which is the starting point to existing buildings, the adjacent district Erflanden, for which 2000 houses are aimed to be heated through Hydrogen.
The key challenge of the project is focused on creating new residential areas without having the need for natural gas as the key energy carrier to supply heating and to make urban areas more sustainable. Experiences from this project are also used to work on retrofit hydrogen CV boiler solutions for the existing residential areas. Subsequently, step-by-step blending tests shall be executed with the final goal: 100% hydrogen.
More specific details on the concrete innovation challenges for which the project developers and Living Lab challenge owners are looking for can be found on The Innovation Challenges page.