Living Laboratory for Decarbonisation - Águeda Sm@rt City Lab
City/Region : Municipality of Águeda , Portugal

The Águeda Sm@rt City Lab, is a living lab that translates into an open innovation environment, where the municipality, citizens, companies and schools collaborate in the development, implementation, validation and testing of new technologies, services and respective applications.

Águeda Sm@rt City Lab creates spaces for the development/testing of innovative technologies with low environmental impact, solidifying the principles of efficient use of material and energy resources.

The project is cofinanced by Environmental Fund and the Municipality of Águeda: by the Environmental fund € 360,656.00, that corresponds to a co-financing rate of 49.4% of the total investment made.

Agendas addressed
DecarbonisationUrban mobilityClimate change
Public space
Pathways followed
  • Involve citizens through participatory implementation
  • Encourage local private and civic engagement
  • Implement sustainable procurement principles
  • Pursue a shift towards a circular economy
  • Wisely select and apply smart technologies
  • Accelerate sustainability and innovation through public procurement
  • Support open data standards
  • Prepare policies for socio-cultural changes due to innovation
Águeda Sm@rt City Lab Headquarters

The vision of Águeda City Council is to be a Human Smart City, based on people and for people, with a view to building a sustainable, competitive, innovative and socially cohesive territory, affirming itself in the national and international context as an example of excellence in management and transparency and a municipality to visit, live and work in.

The Águeda Sm@rt City Lab is located in an area of 47.1 hectares, with 352 buildings (264 housing), 1950 residents, 600 families (mostly with children) and more than 3000 students.

In line with the SDG 2030, the Águeda Sm@rt City Lab aims to be the genesis of a less polluting, more innovative, sustainable, inclusive and resilient city/community, with better quality of life for citizens. The city of Águeda is recognized has one of the most sustainable cities national/internationally, recently recognized has “Top 100 Sustainable Destinations” of the world.

Headquarters opening video:


In Action
Águeda Sm@rt City Lab Headquarters

Águeda Sm@rt City Lab is based on the model of open innovation, improvement the efficiency of public services, co-creation and active participation of citizens, companies and institutions. Aims to respond to real urban challenges in areas like mobility, energy and buildings, circular economy and environment. This real life testing allows consolidation of the solutions developed. All data are available in an open data aggregating platform.

Promote the decarbonization of cities, it’s intended to develop and implement a set of tangible and intangible actions, of an innovative character and with an impact on the decarbonization of urban space, in the four thematic areas (energy and buildings, mobility, circular economy and environment). Implementation of measures to combat climate change through the reduction of CO2 emissions, allowing the improvement of the quality of urban life and the improvement of the economy's competitiveness.

Some actions implemented:

One Paper/cardboard compactor – 20 m3 capacity, which allows a more efficient collection.

Installation of mobile level sensors in ecopoints

21 vehicles of the City Council's passenger car fleet were fitted with emission reducers

Implementation of solutions for charging electric vehicles - four charging points

Sodium vapor luminaries replaced by LED in the city center

Two units of intelligent outdoor furniture with multimedia features, accessible to all, regardless of their physical and cognitive limitations

Smart bench with solar panels (self sufficient) for charging mobile devices

Installation of an intelligent irrigation management system (in 3 green spaces) - reduction in water and energy consumption and in costs with maintenance

Installation of a solar production unit for self-consumption at the Águeda Volunteer Fire Brigade 

Installation of 30 intelligent energy meters (Global Energy Meter) in homes and local commerce

Availability of an electric urban shuttle (transport on request), that will reduce the use of individual 

Installation of a selective collection machine for drinks bottles and cans, for identification and separation

Installation of an intelligent parking management system in two car parks

- Implementation of a space for interpretation and promotion of the Laboratory, open to the community, learn about the technologies and participate in activities/workshops 

"We aim to instil in the community a civic awareness of the environmental implications of our everyday actions, namely in our transport choices, choosing soft means of mobility in our commutes, or even in increasing recycling levels and managing water use efficiently". Edson Santos, Vice-Mayor of the Municipality of Águeda

solar production unit for self-consumption

- Paper/cardboard compactor: in September 2020, 5,820kg were collected in two trips, compared to September 2019 when only 1,500kg were collected

- Sodium vapor luminaries replaced by LED luminaries in the city center

- Emission reducers in 21 vehicles of the municipal fleet, allowing significant improvements in air quality, through the reduction of GHG emissions, allowing the reduction the emissions of gases emitted by around 80 %, and of fuel consumption by 30%.

- 60 Sodium vapor luminaries replaced by LED luminaries in the city center - €453.00 were saved in April and May 2021, compared with the same period in 2020.

- Smart bench with solar panels – 59,560 Produced kWh, 715 USB charging, 440 Wireless charging

- Solar production unit for self-consumption – energy produced from January to July 2021: 10 Mwh, and a total CO2 saving of 4800 kg

- Selective collection machine for drinks bottles and cans – since November of 2020 15,291 containers have been deposited: 9228 plastic bottles, 4907 glass bottles and 1156 cans. The equivalent of 63,396 points awarded. The value of the collection machine reverts to the value of the collection reverts to the Águeda Volunteer Fire Brigade Humanitarian Association

- Adaptation of a creative space – Around 60 awareness-raising actions, including workshops, were organised, reaching around 1500 citizens (including children). Regarding the facebook page, its reach was of about 53 thousand.

“In Águeda, we think, develop and implement with citizens and companies innovative actions that promote the reduction of Greenhouse Effect (GHG) and the adoption of mitigation measures for climate change”. Edson Santos, Vice-Mayor of the Municipality of Águeda

Project video (in update): 


Águeda Sm@rt City Lab aims to mobilize the entire community, with special focus on those who live, work or use the delimited area to, together with the municipality and other partners, develop and implement innovative actions that promote the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and the adoption of climate change mitigation measures, covering four thematic areas.

In line with what we have applied in recent years, we believe that we have done sustainable work from an environmental point of view, recognised by various national and even international bodies, which gives not only credibility but also responsibility to both what we do and the goals we have set for the municipality in this area.

The aim is to change habits of consumption and of appropriation of public and private spaces through various initiatives and thus achieve significant environmental gains.

Monitor and evaluate the global evolution of the measures implemented within the scope of the LVpD, also suggesting that an initial assessment be made to identify the starting scenarios. The impact is measured through implementation indicators per action. All the information will be available in a data aggregator platform, developed by Águeda Municipality.

At the end of the project implementation we will disseminate, reflect, discuss results and challenges with whole community will participate, to show what together we have been able to achieve and to inspire others to be part of the change.

We believe that the next few years will be of consolidation and reinforcement of the measures we have implemented, which make Águeda a municipality with a strong environmental awareness, that cares for and values its natural heritage, seeking to make it better for future generations. A greener, cleaner and healthier territory, for all who live, study, work or visit!” Jorge Almeida, Mayor of the Municipality of Águeda


Challenges and lessons learned
Smart Bench

People are more concerned about the environment and recognise that their daily actions can make a difference. Several awareness sessions were held with the population and their importance was highlighted in order to involve them and listen to their needs.

The replicability and transferability activities go beyond simple dissemination and concern activities and approaches, integrated in the relevant actions of the project.

In this exercise of active citizenship, transparency in implementation is also favored, as well as the involvement of users in technologies and solutions, at all stages, from planning to balance of results, thus enhancing universal participation.

Municipal Bulletin_March
Ambiente Magazine
Links for more information
Municipal Bulletin_December


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