In Italy, a large stock of public housing was built during the 1970s and 1980s with industrialized/prefabricated techniques. These buildings have envelopes characterized by the presence of many thermal bridges and low transmittance values. In addition, they feature inefficient single heating systems in residential units and no cooling/ventilation systems. As a result, these buildings require urgent energy retrofitting actions, and it is therefore necessary to define procedures that will guarantee effective results. The possible interventions must be compatible with building construction techniques as well as be minimally invasive and inexpensive. There are only a limited number of technical solutions, considering that residents should not have to move out during the renovations. In most Italian climatic zones, current interventions are usually linked to external insulation and window replacement, leading to an improvement in energy performance and comfort only during winter. Internal comfort conditions tend to worsen in summer months because seasonal temperatures tend to increase by a few degrees. Therefore, solutions should be proposed that will improve both summer and winter conditions. This work proposes an energy recovery procedure applied to a representative building from the abovementioned period located in the Florence area and constructed with an industrialized system named the “tunnel system” (great panels structure). The procedure used in this study provides for the redevelopment of the envelope and the application of a simple mechanical ventilation system to achieve substantial energy savings and improved indoor comfort conditions.

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