An unique tool for heating and cooling planning (HotMaps)

The EU-funded project HotMaps aims at designing a toolbox to support public authorities, energy agencies and urban planners in strategic heating and cooling planning on local, regional and national levels, and in line with EU policies.

In addition to guidelines and handbooks on how to carry out strategic heating and cooling (H&C) planning, HotMaps will provide the first H&C planning software that is

  • User-driven: developed in close collaboration with 7 European pilot areas.
  • Open source: the developed tool and all related modules will run without requiring any other commercial tool or software. No restrictions in use and access to the source code.
  • EU-28 compatible: the tool will be applicable for cities in all 28 EU Member States.

The Energy Efficiency Directive as well as the RED and EPBD require EU Member States to develop policies foreseeing systematic planning processes for efficient heating and cooling. HotMaps will facilitate this task by allowing users to

  • Map the heating and cooling energy situation including renewable and waste heat potentials in GIS layers in virtually any EU region up to a 250x250m level;
  • Model the energy system, considering hourly matching of supply and demand, demand response etc. on local, regional and national level;
  • Simulate supply and demand options of long-term scenarios until 2050 regarding e.g. CO2 emissions, energy costs, demographic changes, share of renewables.

The software tool will be developed in close cooperation with the target group, i.e. urban planners and strategic decision-makers as well as with members from the open source community. The pilot areas of Aalborg, Bistrita, Frankfurt, Geneva, Milton Keynes, Kerry County and San Sebastian will co-design, test and validate in order to guarantee for a user-friendly software entirely based on user needs. Capacity-building will be another important part of the project: Selected persons from the target group will be trained on the use of the models and tools, thereby contributing to a new generation of energy planners.

Coordinated by the TU Wien, HotMaps is developed by a consortium of leading experts in energy planning in Europe, modelling and tool development, energy policy and communication. Experience from the ground is fed into the project by pilot areas from Denmark, Germany, Romania, Spain, Ireland, Switzerland and the UK as well as 20 further follower areas.




  • European Commission (Horizon 2020 Programme)