Zooming in Manresa pilot site

Francesc Carné is in charge of the BECA project for the pilot site of Manresa, (central Catalonia). We talked

to him in an interview to get more more details about the implementation of ICT services and the expected outcomes for the Spanish pilot site.

Can you tell us more about the pilot site of Manresa?

The site consists of 108 dwellings, divided in 3 different buildings, managed by the municipal company FORUM. The buildings are quite new: the first one is occupied since October 2009, the second one since September 2011 and the third one is still under construction.

What kind of services does the BECA project provide to your tenants?

We will monitor many parameters in 44 of the dwellings: Electricity, gas, water (hot and cold). Amongst these 44 dwellings, we can also monitor indoor temperature and relative humidity in 6 of them. The tenants will have access to these data trough an Internet portal. They can compare their energy consumption with the ones of similar dwellings and reduce their energy consumption.

Are your tenants willing to use BECA services?

In Spain, tenants pay an estimated pre-fixed sum every month for their energy consumption. Currently, this sum represents approximately 35% of the overall rent. If their actual consumption exceeds this estimation, they have to pay extra at the end of the year. Many of them are interested in BECA services as a way to reduce this annual payment. We associated the tenants from the start. Our web portal has been tested by them. We also conducted several information sessions for future tenants of the building before they moved in. The day the tenants of building n°2 were given the key to their new flats, we organised a ceremony during which we explained how BECA works. Finally, in the contracts we have included a document to be signed, authorising the use of the data collected.

What are the advantages of the BECA project for your company?

We do not only monitor the energy consumption of the dwellings. We also control recycled water and the production of electricity through the solar panels on the roof of the building. This allows us to better adjust our energy and water supply. When the system is fully operational, it will help us to reduce operational and maintenance costs, identify problems in the energy systems more easily and solve them faster.

What are the next steps for you?

We already installed and tested all monitoring devices. We also tested our web portal for both tenant’s use and technical management and started to collect data from the dwellings. We now have to implement the final version of our web portal. We will keep on testing our equipment and evaluate the service.

 

To learn more about Manresa’s pilot site: www.forumsa.cat