Smart City Sweden East

Explore eastern Sweden!

Discover smart & sustainable solutions in the eastern region.

Photo: Ola Ericson/

About the region

Smart City Sweden East consists of four counties: Stockholm, Uppsala, Södermanland and Sweden’s largest island: Gotland. The region offers a long tradition of cooperation between business and academia, which has contributed to a high level of innovation and a favorable business climate.

Building smart cities require the public sector to be integrated to a large extent, which can be seen in examples in districts such as Hammarby Sjöstad and Stockholm Royal Seaport, where there has been a high focus on climate, environment and energy issues.

A wide range of platforms and corporate networks promote innovation and development in the region. One successful example is the Urban ICT Arena in Kista in the north of Stockholm, one of the world’s leading business clusters for innovation in digitalisation.

Stockholm has one of the world’s largest and most complicated district heating systems with a large number of actors who together produce and distribute district heating & cooling and electricity from hundreds of production units to millions of people. The production has the world’s largest heat pump plant, innovative energy storage, and waste incineration to recover energy from residual products from society and forestry, which contributes to a well-functioning waste management system. Uppsala and Gotland also have well-developed district heating networks with a very small proportion of fossil fuels.

Water and wastewater treatment are key functions in a well-functioning city, a service that often goes unnoticed as long as it performs as planned. Uppland, Södermanland and Gotland all have different challenges with water quality and water supply that have been solved in different ways. In Uppsala, the regional capital of Uppland, water from the passing river Fyrisån is purified through a ridge due to groundwater scarcity. At Hammarby Sjöstadsverk in Stockholm, unique research is conducted on membrane technology for more efficient wastewater treatment, which will make Henriksdal’s wastewater treatment plant one of the largest in the world to use membrane technology. On Gotland, the testbed Storsudret is testing new solutions in drinking water purification.

Social sustainability is key in urban development projects and by initiating dialogue and involvement during construction and renovation processes, the likelihood of a successful project increases significantly. Smart City Sweden East offers examples of social sustainability, such as Fryshuset, an organization that works to support and include young people in the community.

Best practice in the region

Circular Water Solutions in southern Gotland

In recent years, the island of Gotland has experienced a severe water crisis, negatively affecting tourism and small-scale industries. Water shortages hinder economic development due to strict regulations for building of new houses and the start-up of new business that consume water. Innovative circular water solutions are tested and evaluated in the testbed area Storsudret in southern Gotland.

#BELOVEDCITY- Collaboration for a better city

Älskade stad (Beloved city) is a unique collaboration concept to save vehicle movements in the city centre and to inspire others to help increase the pace of sustainable Environmental initiatives for a vibrant city.

Stockholm Public Transport – The journey to sustainable public transport

Stockholm public transport (SL) is on a journey to become the most sustainable public transport provider in the world. Achieving a low environmental impact has been a priority for a long time. Today, the SL public transport system is operated on fossil-free fuels and energy from renewable sources.

Let the nature do the work – Stockholm Royal Seaport

Stockholm Royal Seaport, one of the world’s biggest urban planning projects, has developed an integrated stormwater system that purifies and delays storm- and meltwater before it is released into the sea. The system connects green roofs and rooftop gardens with ponds, open storm drain water and surface water drain and urban greenery.

KTH Live-In Lab – Testbeds for Accelerated Innovation

KTH Live-In Lab offers something as unique as a full-scale test beds, ranging from apartments, education building, hotel, changeable interior design and infrastructure, database for user and property data, and a very valuable collaboration platform.

Urban ICT Arena: Testbeds for digitalisation in an urban environment

Urban ICT Arena is a co-creation arena in Kista Science City, one of the world’s leading ICT-clusters, that believes in cooperation as crucial for meeting the goals set out in Agenda 2030. Urban ICT Arena provides tools for ICT companies and the public sector to overcome tomorrow’s challenges – today.


IntegrCity aims at developing and implementing a decision-support platform focusing on planning and designing integrated energy networks and further infrastructure developments. While city planners and energy companies can take advantage of the platform while planning energy supply infrastructure, the projects have also tested different energy supply and energy storage solutions both in Sweden and in Switzerland.

District heating and cooling – A more sustainable energy production

With a water-filled rock chamber beneath Kungsholmen in Stockholm, the energy company Stockholm Exergi has been able to substantially increase capacity in the city’s network for district cooling. The ordinary cooling plants in buildings can be phased out, and both high electricity needs and the risk of leakage of ozone-depleting substances will decrease along with them.

Biogas Xpose: sustainable biogas production through innovative technologies

BIOGAS XPOSE demonstrates how a region with a high demand for biomethane (BM) can increase the production of BM as a renewable vehicle fuel in an economically and environmentally viable fashion by maximizing regional waste as the resource. The project is reducing the total emissions of carbon dioxide with 334 600 tonnes by sustainable production of BM that replaces fossil fuels in the transportation sector. The project ended in 2018.

Extended Producer Responsibility in Sweden: Towards better waste management

Extended Producer responsibility (EPR) is a governmental policy and a Swedish law that aims to better waste management and collection. The Swedish system shifts the waste management cost or physical collection fully from local governments to producers. The policy applies to different goods such as packaging, newsprint, electronic products, batteries, tires, end-of-life vehicles, pharmaceutical waste, stray radioactive products and radioactive sources.

Help from the larvae: Turning food waste into animal feed

How can larvae help reduce food waste and at the same time reduce the risks of spreading diseases? In Sweden, researchers and experts in waste management are working together to turn food waste into animal protein feed.

Underground urban farming

Cultivating city bazaars run innovation for sustainable urban development in Helsingborg, Landskrona and Stockholm. The unique cooperation has been developed by a consortium of cities, associations, academics as well as companies with the ambition of providing new, green workplaces and growing companies.

Tummelsta community – fulfills requirements on phosphorus removal

Tummelsta community got requirements to reduce phosphorus in their wastewater with 90% and wanted at the same time a low-maintenance solution which was environmental friendly and chemical free. They chose to install reactive filter media, Polonite. The saturated filter media can be used as a fertilizer in the area.

Unique method restored lake Turingen

Both the natural values and economic values have increased in Nykvarn since the municipality restored the mercury-contaminated lake Turingen, The today ineadible fish will in a relatively near future be eadible again.

Restoration of overgrown meadows

At Svartsjöviken in Ekerö municipality, overgrown meadows have been restored. The grounds, which had a low sustainability, were restored with newly developed aphibious vehicles, light band wagons and stump cutting equipment. Today, the meadows are harvested, which has recreated a valuable biotop. At the same time, a long-term parntnership has been established between the municipality, the farmers, the local residents, landowners and various other associations.

Stockholm Waterfront

Opposite the City Hall, 3 new building are under construction: a congress hall, a hotel and an office building. The project, known as Stockholm Water Front commenced in 2005, when the City of Stockholm decided to build a new conference centre with a hotel facility. But an office building was also built. in order to finance its realization. Stockholm Water Front aims to achieve environmental excellence. There are three installations, which make this possible:

<em>Glass Facades are giant solar collectors</em>
The large glass facade of the Congress Hall is perfectly located in the southern direction and acts as a giant solar collector. Already in the beginning of March, it is possible to extract 1 MW of energy. The façade has double layers of glass with air between them, which is heated by the sun. The hot air is converted to hot water and distributed to other buildings, for heating domestic water.

<em>Energy in balance</em>
Stockholm Water Front consists of three buildings with totally different energy profiles. The office building does not use much energy during evenings and nights and the hotel has its highest energy consumption during mornings and evenings. This imbalance is used whereby energy is transferred between the buildings according to the demand. In order to produce cooling, Stockholm Water Front uses a method, called phase transformation, which means that the cooling is stored in ice during the night. Plain water is extremely effective in storing cold. In addition one will also use cold water from the nearby Klara Lake.

Congestion charges in Stockholm

The introduction of congestion charges in Stockholm was one of the reasons why Stockholm was awarded “European Green Capital 2010”. The introduction has led to reduced traffic with somewhere between 20 and 25% and that air quality has been improved, according to the Road Administration.

Organic model farm at Nynäs gård

At Nynäs gård, there is a biogas installation, which is designed for the farm’s phosphorus needs. The farm does no longer need to purchase any chemical fertilizers, nor does it need to buy fuel for its vehicles.

Extensive renovation made a 70´ies building energy

The City block Pennfäktaren was once a energy-guzzling building from the 1970’ies, which has been rebuilt and become one of Stockholm’s most modern office buildings, with many examples of cleantech installations.

The eco-smart Kungsbrohuset

In Kungsbrohuset, there are several innovative cleantech solutions. Among other things, Kungsbrohuset recovers the excess heat, generated by the commuters at the Stockholm Central Station. Water from Klara Lake is used for cooling the building.

Myrsjön wetlands – using nature to clean storm water

An artificial wetland was built in the spring of 2006 next to the lake Myrsjön in Nacka. The aim is to use nature’s own mechanisms to clean the polluted storm water from an industrial area, before it runs into the lake Myrsjön.

Laduvikens Waterpark

At Laduviken, 5 million Swedish kronor is invested in a water park, which will reduce the amount of pollutants entering the lake through storm water. The aim is, among other things, to reduce phosphorus by 25%.

Boat-washer in Trosa Marina

In Trosa Marina there is a boat-washer, which scrubs off the fouling on boat hulls. Thanks to the boat-washer, the boat-owners do not have to use environmentally-hazardous anti fouling paints anymore.

Artificial wetlands in Trosa

Since 2003 the waste water from the town of Trosa (about 4500 citizens) has been treated in artificial wetlands, after the basic treatment in the sewage plant. Thanks to the wetlands the Trosa river and the town bay have been spared from eutrophicating substances (plant nutrients) as well as contagious substances (pathogenes). Besides the value of purifying the water, the wetlands are a popular recreation area. The wetlands are used for education and many study visits are made here. Vagnhärad, the neighbouring town with about 4500 citizens, has a similar area of artificial wetlands since 2001.

Waste incineration at Högdalenverket

Högdalenverket, which is one of Europe’s most modern installations for energy extracted from waste, produces electricity and heat from Stockholm’s combustible household waste and industry waste. Högdalenverket is an important component in the district heating network of southern Stockholm.

Vacuum system in Östermalmshallen

A vacuum system handles the waste in Östermalm’s food market hall. The waste is transported via pipelines by means of under pressure to a storage unit and later to a biogas installation. With this system, waste is no longer a problem, but a resource.

Food waste becomes biogas

A small recycling centre in Huddinge municipality produces biogas using organic waste, which is unique in the Stockholm region. Despite the fact that only a few tons of biogas is produced every year, the plant brings important knowledge for future projects.

Passive houses in Beckomberga

In the northern parts of Bromma, two so called ”passive-houses” are being built. Passive houses are particulary isolated, with an efficient heat recycling system and energy-efficient windows. They need 50% less energy compared to conventional multi-dwelling buildings.

Cleaner air in Stockholm with sewage sludge

Two sewage treatment works in Stockholm are producing biogas from sewage sludge. After having purified the gas, it can be used for both heating and vehicle fuel and in addition creates no net emissions of carbon dioxide. Consequently, the treatment works have reduced their amount of emissions and become energy suppliers. Therefore, sewage sludge is no longer an environmental problem, but an important energy resource.

The Hammarby Sjöstad Ecocycle

The goal for Hammarby Sjöstad in Stockholm, Sweden, was to halve the overall environmental impact compared with if the area had been built in the early 1990s. The goal was not fully attained. But thanks to the ambitious target and integrated planning, this lakeside town has set an international example.

Eco-cycle solutions in Norrtälje

Thanks to a large-scale installation of composting and a hundreds of separate sewers, the municipality of Norrtälje has managed to reduce a leakage of nutrients with five tons to the Baltic Sea. These actions have raised the property owner’s interest for Eco-cycle solutions and the municipality has gained a valuable knowledge in eco-cycle adapted water and sewage sytems.

Käppala – an efficient water treatment plant

Käppalaverket is one of the world’s most efficient water treatment installations, with the entire northern Stockholm as a catchment area. Apart from the fact that the installation treats water for over 500 000 people, it also produces biogas, running 100 busses.

Environmental investments in Vällingby Centrum

Svenska Bostäder have invested over three million Swedish kronor in an installation for geothermal energy and a recycling central. Thanks to the investment, Vällingby Centrum produces nowadays its own energy, which provides the shopping centre with 60 % of its need for heating and 90 % of its need for cooling.

Destruction plants for laughing gas at three hospi

In 2011 the laughing gas emmissions had decreased with 75% in Stockholmslänslandsting compared to the emmissions in 2002

Sustainable Lighting

A playground in Little Ursvik in Sundbyberg produces its own energy from sun and wind. The energy used for lighting the playground.

Underground waste management

Thanks to a stationary pneumatic refuse collection system, the garbage doesn’t need to be collected by trucks anymore. Instead, the garbage is transported by air through pipes, where it is compacted in sealed containers. Using a vacuum system instead of an old-fashioned refuse room or waste container does away with problems with unpleasant odours, and nobody needs to come into contact with waste bags or containers.

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