Research - (2022) Volume 12, Issue 6

Ecological transformation of HLM district in Biskra City, Algeria: Rethinking the environment

L. Bensmina1*, S. Bouzaher2 and F.Z. Lebbal2
*Correspondence: L. Bensmina, Institute of Architecture and Urbanism, University of Batna 1, Algeria, Email: ,

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In this work, the focus is on the HLM district of Biskra, dating from the colonial period. This district consists of three large buildings that are organized in a way that promotes their badly solar and wind exposure. The aim of this paper is to propose a scenario guaranteeing the sustainability of the HLM district of Biskra through the use of renewable energy technologies.

The application of the method HQE²R which crosses the various dimensions of sustainable development with certain principles of action allowing the transformation of simple district to eco-district. These sustainability goals are decomposed into targets, sub-targets and indicators and form an ISDIS analysis system which is the process structure and its main tools.


Sustainable development, district, eco-district, HQE2R, renewable energy.


The human responsibility for climate change and the environmental and social risks facing the world today call for the need to implement spatial planning strategies and integrate all the issues of sustainable development into urban projects. (Latoui, B., Abdallah, F. 2017).

In this paper our objective is to propose a scenario of sustainable development of the HLM district in Biskra, focusing on the integration of renewable energy system, local issues and the application of the HQE²R method with its five global objectives: preserving and enhance heritage quality, improve the quality of the environment, improve diversity, improve integration and strengthen the social bond. These models seem sufficient to cover the HLM neighborhood analysis in Biskra from the point of view of sustainable development. For the development of sustainability scenarios, our work was inspired by several experiments applied in the world and in particular in Europe: BedZED in England (Chance, T. 2009), Eva lanxmeer in the Netherlands (Van Timmeren, A., Sidler, D., Kaptein, M. 2007) and Vauban in Germany (Schroepfer, T., Hee, L. 2008).


The sustainable transformation of the HLM district in Biskra will be divided into three (03) phases: decision, analysis and evaluation of action plans. These three phases are the pillars of the HQE2R approach.

The HQE2R (C. Charlot-Valdieu, Ph. Outrequin, 2009) approach consists of methods and tools to integrate sustainable development into each phase of a neighborhood project. The five (05) objectives and twenty-one (21) sustainable development targets constitute a system called "ISDIS", which gives the possibility of conducting studies on the existing situation through the use of the INDI model Indicators Impact) that provides a neighborhood profile with strengths and weaknesses, identifies critical aspects or priorities, evaluates and simulates expected effects of expected transformations.


The HLM district of Biskra suffers from several problems in terms of poor management of space and lack of architectural and urban quality, manifested by the poor management of household waste, lack of rainwater management and other problems related to energy use directly influence the quality of life in this neighborhood.


The objective of this analysis is to submit the 150 homes district to the five global sustainable development objectives and to each of the twenty-one targets. The use of the INDI model (C. Charlot-Valdieu, Ph. Outrequin, 2005) allows us to highlight the performance and qualities of the neighborhood for each of these 21 targets by placing the neighborhood in a radar scheme on a scale ranging from -3 to +3 (Table 1).

Objectives Targets Under targets
Resource 1-Waste Management of household and construction waste
    Use of renewable energies
  2-Water Use of rainwater
    Rainwater management
    Sewerage network
  3-Space Optimization of space consumption
    Requalification of brownfields and polluted sites
  4-Materials Reuse of materials in construction/rehabilitation
  5-Built heritage and natural Enhancing the quality of architectural and natural heritage
    Preservation/enhancement of the natural heritage
Environment local 6-landscape Quality of neighborhood entries
    Quality of street furniture
  7-Housing Quality of buildings
    Quality of housing
  8-Health and hygiene Neighborhood cleanliness
    Insalubrious buildings
  9-Safety, risks Safety of people and property
    Local management of natural risks
  10-Air Outdoor and indoor air quality
  11-Noise Neighborhood noise
    Pollution sonore liée au trafic
  12-Energy Energy efficiency (heating, ventilation)
Diversity 13-Population Social and economic diversity
  14-Function and activity Presence of Trade and Service Equipment
  15-Housing Diversity of housing: size, nature
Integration 16-Education and employment Strengthening the role of the school in the district
    Fight against academic failure
  17-Liaison with the city Accessibility to employment, services and equipment
  18-Attractiveness of neighborhood Attractive activity or facilities in the neighborhood
  19-Displacement Implementation of non-polluting and efficient systems

Table 1. ISDIS system, source: C. Charlot-Valdieu and Ph. Outrequin, 2009.

The use of the INDI model shows that the district is far from the recommendations of sustainable development. (Fig. 1), the neighborhood responds almost negatively in all targets and especially in targets 2 and 12.


Fig 1: The initial state of place of the HLM district according to the INDI model, source: authors 2022.

Action plan

As the diagnosis has shown, the district suffers from a lack of resources management including water, solar and wind.

In the first action, we propose a scenario for the management of rainwater, a key action in favor of the use of the water recovered in the irrigation of the green spaces proposed in the neighborhood development. A second action concerns the management of solar energy in favor of improving the quality of life in the neighborhood and helps the environment. While a third action is represented by the use of wind energy.

Rainwater management

Several techniques have been developed and applied in different experiments of sustainable neighborhood transformation in Germany, France and Denmark. These techniques include valleys and ditches, drainage trenches, infiltration wells, reservoir pavements, storage roofs, underground retention basin. (Batista, N.C., Melício, R., Matias, J.C.O., Catalão, 2013).

The technique most used and most appropriate for our case study is the technique of infiltration wells, a technique that is characterized by its simple design that does not require too much space, the good integration in the site that ensures the safety of neighborhood residents (Fig. 2 and 3).


Fig 2: Different views of infiltration wells, source: FIOGEP, 2010.


Fig 3: Schematic diagram of infiltration wells, source: FIOGEP, 2010.

Solar energy

In the aim of made the houses of the HLM district as energy-efficient as possible and looking for new opportunities to reduce the energy consumption, it may be a good time to go solar. With advancements in technology and the expansion of the solar industry, prices for solar panels have fallen dramatically. Innovative new solar financing models including options to lease solar panels are also increasingly viable options (Tabb, P. 1984) (Fig. 4).


Fig 4: Solar energy system in south Florida, USA by IKEA, source:

Wind energy

Knowing that the district suffer from wind exposure, wind turbines can be an incredibly efficient way to produce electricity for the district. Small wind systems can reduce the energy-costs by as much as 90 percent, but they do require careful planning. Estimating the wind resource, checking the local permitting, and zoning requirements are key factors to consider in order to pursue this option. (Wagner, H.J. 2018) (Fig. 5 and 6).


Fig 5: Wind turbine, source: A. Thompson, 2016.


Fig 6: HLM neighborhood plan with renewable energy systems, source: authors 2022.


The projection of the two actions related to targets 2 and 12 in the INDI model allows us to evaluate the reliability of our intervention. The comparison between the initial schema and the final schema in Fig. 7 shows an increase not only in targets 2 and 12 but also in targets (18, 21 and 10). An acceptable increase in the number of actions taken at the beginning and the presence of direct relations between certain targets leads to the importance of making a good choice of targets in the analysis phase.


Fig 7: Evaluation of action plan using the INDI model, source: authors 2022.


The analysis of the HLM district of Biskra according to the HQE²R approach shows that the neighborhood is far from the standards of sustainability. The proposed scenario “power the houses, save money and help the environment” attempts to construct a development policy based on the principles of sustainable development, which identifies two actions responding to the five objectives.


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Author Info

L. Bensmina1*, S. Bouzaher2 and F.Z. Lebbal2
1Institute of Architecture and Urbanism, University of Batna 1, Algeria
2Department of Architecture, Lacomofa, University of Biskra, Algeria

Citation: Bensmina, L., Bouzaher, S., Lebbal, F.Z. (2022). Ecological transformation of HLM district in Biskra City, Algeria: Rethinking the environment. Ukrainian Journal of Ecology. 12:1-5.

Received: 06-Jun-2022, Manuscript No. UJE-22-66045; , Pre QC No. P-66045; Editor assigned: 08-Jun-2022, Pre QC No. P-66045; Reviewed: 20-Jun-2022, QC No. Q-66045; Revised: 25-Jun-2022, Manuscript No. R-66045; Published: 30-Jun-2022, DOI: 10.15421/2022_378

Copyright: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.