Eco- Construction for Sustainable Development
Luxembourg requires housing capable of addressing the ecological challenge and social changes. The housing production is dominated by real estate development, and the land reserve is monopolized by private sector, in particular by a limited number of families and enterprises, who generate expensive but low-quality housing. Besides, the dwellings which are currently under construction are heavily influenced by a traditional family model, and the number of households within these criteria is continuously decreasing. As a result, the current housing market does not provide for a growing need for communal, hybrid and transgenerational activities. Our lifestyles tend more and more towards a more intense relationship between urban and rural, living and working, individual and the common.
Recycling could be considered another ecological necessity that is not being catered for in the current housing model. The built environment's sustainability is too often reduced to the building's lifecycle, ignoring the grey energy and CO2 emissions produced during both construction and dismantling of these buildings. A change in the architectural culture is necessary, which must take into an account a broader understanding of the various structural cycles, as well as the evolution of users and uses.
As part of the ECON4SD research project, co-financed by the European Union, a multidisciplinary team of architects and engineers from the University of Luxembourg is developing alternative housing models, entirely recyclable and with a material bank inventory organized in BIMs, which aim to address these socio-ecological issues.
The prototype is an 11 story bar consisting of a primary reinforced concrete structure and wooden housing units. The shelf-structure provides a stable slab with a structure extending over two floors for standardized, prefabricated and portable housing modules. These modules offer a living space of 25 m2 designed for either a single person or couple. For each one of the modules, there is also a 6 m2 of the common areas, which adds up to a significantly below-average floor surface per inhabitant as for Luxembourgish standards. The modules can be added or removed by a crane at any time. This way, the building can grow or shrink, responding to the demand. The optimization of the housing surface area is associated with a range of communal activities on the top floor. These activities are theme-oriented, from a recreation area with a swimming pool, through a shared analogue lounge, all the way to a collaborative workspace. The ground floor offers an envelope that can be occupied according to the location of the building: in urban situations mainly by shops, in suburban cases more by offices or workspaces. The bar itself is a module that can be extended depending on the terrain and demand. Its structure allows for the development of land that is difficult to build along.
Research project of the University of Luxembourg
Financed by the European Union and Fonds National de la Recherche du Luxembourg
Headed by Prof. Danièle Waldmann
Prof. Florian Hertweck
Marielle Ferreira Silva
Prof. Danièle Waldmann
Dr. Laddu Bhagya Jayasinghe
Prof. Markus Schäfer
Prof. Andreas Zilian
Prof. Frank Scholzen
Prof. Norman Teferle
Link to ECON4SD Website