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KIT is now fossil-free

The Royal Tropical Institute (KIT) has permanently turned off the gas and removed the boilers from the building, making KIT, Amsterdam’s largest national monument, fossil-free.

The old gas-fired boilers have been replaced with heat pumps that will use an underground heat and cold storage (WKO) system to heat and cool KIT’s historic building gas-free. The KIT Hotel, currently under renovation, will also use the system.

“Removing the boilers is a milestone in making KIT more sustainable,” says Louis van den Berghe, CFO of KIT. “When I saw the boilers actually go out of the building, it became very tangible that we are now permanently off gas.”

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Sustainable hotel and monument

By turning off the gas tap, KIT, as the largest national monument in the city, is leading the way in the energy transition to a gas-free and fossil-free future: a major ambition of the city of Amsterdam and the Netherlands.

KIT has been working on this for years with sustainability experts from De Groene Grachten, a company based in the KIT building. Suze Gehem of De Groene Grachten: “If Amsterdam’s largest national monument can get rid of gas, then it can be done anywhere! An inspiring example for all other monuments in our country that want to become more sustainable. It really can be done!”

Gas-Free Heritage

The replacement of KIT’s gas boilers with heat pumps and an underground thermal storage system is being carried out by Linthorst Techniek. The company has the necessary experience in delivering gas-free heating and cooling in existing buildings, including in the heritage sector, but this is the largest national monument addressed by the company.

“We have developed a unique heat pump technique that ensures that we do not have to change much to the indoor installations. For example, we are installing multiple high-temperature (air) heat pumps to make this property gas-free,” says Arend Jan Kamphuis, Engineer at Linthorst. “It ensures that the impact in a monumental building is minimal. In such a beautiful building as KIT you want to ensure the preservation of all the original elements.”