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Eco-building zone promotes demographic growth

The tiny Grisons community of Flerden/CH has succeeded in attracting new residents to its mountain village - and done so ecologically. In 2003 the community created an 8,500 m² energy-saving housing area for new builds erected according to ecological principles.
The concept was a success, and people began to settle in the area. Six of the thirteen plots were sold in the space of three years, and the number of inhabitants has risen from 170 to 204 - and the trend is up.
However prospective home builders must fulfil a number of commitments. The building must be certified with the Minergie label and make use of solar energy; other alternative energy sources are also desirable. In addition the property must be occupied all year round. In return the plots are generously proportioned; there are no stipulations with regard to the design of the building; and the community is selling the land at around 40 per cent below the usual prices. Flerden has achieved its objective of countering the exodus in its population and could well act as a role model for other Swiss mountain villages.
Source: http://domizil.nzz.ch/2007/08/12/imn/articleFDSE6 (de)