February 08, 2019

A living lab for a sustainable city development

Økern Sentrum - a living laboratory against becoming Europe's most environmentally friendly urban development project.

With the goal of becoming Europe's most sustainable urban development project, Økern Sentrum "living lab" in OREEC and Oslo municipality is now its Interregional European network for the future urban development. 

Norway's renewable technology suppliers will have access to Living Lab throughout Northern Europe through Northern Connection. This gives them the opportunity to establish themselves in new markets and get new contracts, while at the same time northern European suppliers have the opportunity to participate in development projects in Oslo. The goal has been to establish a North-European network of actors who, in cooperation, lower the threshold for deliveries of renewable technology across national borders. This contributes to the growth of companies that offer this type of technology, growth throughout the region and smarter, cleaner North European cities.

The project makes the big cities in Northern Europe showcases for sustainable technology solutions. Økern Sentrum, owned by Steen & Strøm and Storebrand, is Oslo's Living Lab in Northern Connections. Renewable energy and sustainable technology suppliers from all over Northern Europe were invited to Oslo to show that they can offer services, technology and new innovations in this construction project. 

"With an ambition to become a new Nordic model for urban development and the most sustainable urban development project Europe - we have given the opportunity for start-ups and medium-sized companies that offer good solutions for the future to show us what they offer," says project director Thomas Holth

Økern Sentrum joined the Interreg project Northern Connections, in collaboration with OREEC and Oslo, so that one could get the best Clean Tech solutions from Northern Europe.

The goal of Living Lab was to listen to the suggestions from the participants and understand how far we can lift the Økern Center project together, as well as utilizing experience, new knowledge and expertise that lies in the Northern Connection program. During the process leading up to the Innovation Prize on November 29, 2018, we received several innovative contributions that created added value for our project, Holth says.

The themes this laboratory focused on were: 

  • Energy solutions 
  • Smart goods handling 
  • Transport 
  • Circular economy - Future waste streams.

Here are a few randomly selected company profiles that participated in Living Lab on November 29:

DesaH BV

DeSaH has developed a compact modular sewage treatment system that helps improve water, nutrients and energy cycles. In collaboration with both universities and research institutions, the known activated sludge process has been optimized and combined with new treatment strategies. The resulting treatment system provides a more sustainable approach to wastewater treatment.

E.ON. Sverige AB

We work with the production and distribution of electric power, heating and cooling. Our product ectogrid ™ has the best features of heat pumps and refrigerators, combining them with the best features of the energy distribution networks (electrical, thermal and gas). The components of the system are the same, but they are assembled in a new and new way. Ectogrid ™ technology is protected by several patents and is available for licensing.

Kraft Engineering

KRAFT Engineering offers project management, BIM support and 3D / CAD modeling from concept development to completed project. Our projects include construction, road, rail and other infrastructure. Creating a 3D model early in the planning phase makes it possible to evaluate, adapt and quickly visualize several different conceptual solutions

Orbital Systems

Our innovative technology reduces the traditional 100L shower to just 5L, providing an incredible reduction of up to 90% in water and 80% in energy consumption. At ORBITAL SYSTEMS, everything we do is based on the belief that the world needs a new paradigm for daily water use. Spun out of an academic partnership with NASA, we are an award-winning clean-tech company based in Malmö, Sweden with operations in Europe and the US


Powered by the vision of eternal change of indoor mobility, wheel.me wants to become a preferred platform for indoor mobility and material handling. The Wheel.me Genius system consists of a robot component ("Smart Wheels") supported by a next-generation indoor navigation system and sophisticated data analysis - allowing everything indoors to move smoothly.

ISSOL Solar Glass

We are a solar glass manufacturer and a project developer of Active Glassing solutions. We develop beautiful positive energy solutions for buildings that produce their own electricity using the sun's free energy. We have the ability to provide an architectural function to photovoltaic technology by replacing conventional building materials with active building materials. More than just producing electricity, our products become important parts of the building envelope that makes it waterproof, insulated, protected from sun or aesthetic.