The selection of material and its application plays a pivotal role in the construction industry. It depicts the sense of design, looks, and utility of a structure. The construction industry has been a black hole of unsustainable use of resources. This continuous malicious practice has not only caused scarcity of materials but has also led to an inequitable distribution of resources and not to forget the scar of environmental harm it has caused. There are many methods used to reduce waste and increase profits through salvage, reuse, and the recycling of construction waste. Sustainable development is a tool for a continual improvement cycle and with process innovation the need to save money in the processes via reduced resources and utility costs.

According to the project sight, the largest volume of current waste comes from the demolition of a building, with only 1/3rd being reused. Many firms have been working with the principle of reusing debris, doors, windows, and other elements in new building construction. This has a dual impact on saving money as well as the environment

Some of the works have been listed below: 

1. Façade house in Rotterdam

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Façade house_©Architecturr maken

This house is built by the Architecturr maken, for themselves. This skinny house is strategically located in the sparse fabric of the city with the built dimensions of 4.65m in width, and 8.8m in depth with each floor having 120 sq.m of usable floor space. This particular structure is 4 floors high with the exposed brick façade merging it with the context. 

The entire façade of this building is made of recycling waste products which were then converted to brick by StoneCycling – a company that specialized in recycling construction waste landfills in brick manufacturing. It is said to have used 15 tons of industrial waste.  For the manufacturing of bricks, waste like glass, clay, ceramic, etc. was collected from a radius of 100 miles of the StoneCycling unit.

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Façade house_©Architecturr maken
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Façade house_©Architecturr maken
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Façade house_©Architecturr maken

2. Container city 2, London

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Container city 2_©container city

Container city is a 5-floor workspace situated in Trinity Buoy wharf, London. It is located adjacent to container city 1 with bridges acting as interconnecting elements. This structure was built in 2002 within an area of 8208 m2.  The architect Eric Reynolds adopted the concept of reusing shipping containers to transform them into building elements. These containers are procured and then arranged in various ways to transform them into a functional space. This modular technology not only saves time but also reduces disruption of the site and other resources making it environmentally friendly. This entire structure is made with 80% of recycled waste, with the stacking of 12 containers of dimension 8 x 40 in 2001. The city is made with 2/3rd the cost of the normal construction cost and is completed within a much lesser time frame. 

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Container city 2_©container city

3. Urban Rigger, Copenhagen

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Urban Rigger_©container city

Urban rigger is a community living solution on water design by eminent architect Bjarke Ingels in Copenhagen, Denmark. With an extremely flexible design solution, student housing is developed. The architect kept in mind the interactive space and hence arranged the containers in a manner to provide a courtyard in the center and roofs to be used as interactive spaces. By stacking 9 containers Bjarke Ingels created 12 studios. This came with the necessity to provide accommodation to a huge flow of students and low-cost living.  

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Urban Rigger_©container city
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Urban Rigger_©container city
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Urban Rigger_©container city

4. Collage House, Mumbai

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Collage house_©S+PS Architects

With a “corner of windows” made from recycled city-demolished home windows and doors, the front facade sets a beautiful backdrop for the large volumetric living space, when arranged horizontally and vertically! The structure also flaunts 100-year-old columns from a demolished house, which give the area a particular air of nostalgia. On the terrace level, it is nurtured by a lightweight steel and glass pavilion (with solar panels above). The architects Pinkish Shah and Shilpa Gore Shah have majestically designed the interior in antique style using old colonial furniture, textile blocks, and fabric waste. Also, the flooring is made of old Burma teak rafters and purlins.

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Collage house_©S+PS Architects
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Collage house_©S+PS Architects
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Collage house_©S+PS Architects
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Collage house_©S+PS Architects

5. Capilla San Bernado, Argentina

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Capilla San Bernado_©Nicholas Campodonico

Architect Nicholas Campodonico built a chapel within the area of 92m2 in La Playso, Argentina. The patron saint, Saint Bernard’s Chapel, stands amid a little grove that was once home to a rural house and its yards, which were demolished to reuse their resources, particularly their one-hundred-year-old bricks. The location lacks any amenities or power; nature sets its own rules.

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Capilla San Bernado_©Nicholas Campodonico
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Capilla San Bernado_©Nicholas Campodonico
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Capilla San Bernado_©Nicholas Campodonico

6. Ceramic Brick house, Vietnam

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Ceramic brick house_©H&P

By generating a natural sensation of breathing rhythm in monsoon tropical settings, which is ascribed to the 4 built-in functions: The Inside and outside; mass and void. A “naturally breathing” house offers a solution to the quality improvement of occupied space. Along with the inner duplex, the layer of ceramic bricks serves to remove smoke and dust, draw in the fresh air, and dissipate heat through open panels on the front that are interspersed with potted plants. This filter restores the architectural space by stimulating interaction and connection between the interior and exterior environment, including roofs with creepers above and pot plants and vegetables below, sunlight, and shadow. The exterior has a double-skin facade with several voids within and recycled ceramic bricks of size 40x40cm. The interior layer is made entirely of glass panels. 

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Ceramic brick house_©H&P
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Ceramic brick house_©H&P

7. Terracotta roof tile façade, Australia

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Terracotta roof tile fascade_©Luigi Rosselli, Raffaello Rosselli

The concept of Raffaello Rosselli in collaboration with Luigi Rosselli architects was to identify a waste element and redefine its use and hence revalue it. This comes up with the knowledge of the fact that the construction industry is responsible for 50% of the waste in Australia. The attempts were to reduce building energy footprints as much as possible. The terracotta tile, a forgotten icon, was chosen since it can be easily acquired and doesn’t have a strong resale market. (Tiles that are no longer being manufactured are collected, while newer tiles have little market value and end up in landfills.) Putting aside the universality of the tiles, the terracotta material itself—each unique tile made of clay and yet burned by hand—attracted people to it. 

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Terracotta roof tile fascade_©Luigi Rosselli, Raffaello Rosselli
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Terracotta roof tile fascade_©Luigi Rosselli, Raffaello Rosselli

8. Rane Vidyalaya School, Theerampalayam, Tamil Nadu

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Rane Vidyalaya School _©Shanmugam Associates

The goal was to build a building that would benefit the neighborhood’s social fabric and serve as a symbol of Rane’s key principles. These walls were built using a layering technique that started with large, random stone and rubble at the bottom and progressed to finer, solid brickwork, mud, and slate at the top. Red wire cut bricks from a nearby kiln and grey fly ash brick reclaimed from industrial cement waste were utilized in alternating wall layers. Architectural elements like fly ash bricks, baked earth tile, and terracotta jalis help to create an interesting light shadow pattern, generate a comfortable microclimate and on all the above it is a cost-effective solution with the roof cutouts and courtyards.

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Rane Vidyalaya School _©Shanmugam Associates
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Rane Vidyalaya School _©Shanmugam Associates

9. Manh Manh salon, Vietnam

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Manh Manh salon_© H&P

A deteriorating hair salon in a populated neighborhood of the Van Quan urban region was converted into the Manh Manh salon. The project proposes a strategy for recycling readily accessible materials, such as doors, glass, tables and chairs, bricks, low-quality wood, etc., to create a unique place that is also more hospitable to the environment. 200 thousand repurposed hardwood beads with a diameter of 2.7 cm are the project’s standout feature (of 2 types: colorless and color of vine fruits at their ripeness). To simulate a zigzag-style ceiling and a beaded curtain dividing the space below, these wooden beads are strung into strings of varying lengths (11 beadsImage string on average).

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Manh Manh salon_©H&P
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Manh Manh salon_©H&P
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Manh Manh salon_©H&P

10. Wadi School, Rajkot

Wadi School_©Kakani Associates

Designed by Kakani associates, the idea behind developing the wadi school was to recycle the waste that can be procured from the nearby areas. This concept could not only reduce the carbon footprint but also helps in minimizing the effective cost of building the institute. They procured Gypsum from the ceramic industry, Flu ash from the thermal industry, and lime from Mithapur, tata chemical factory. The metal for framing and structural purposes came from Alang. Depending on the quality and type bamboo came from Assam and in and around Gujarat. Roofing is done with layers of mats of date palm and thatch which can be locally procured.

Various countries have moved their focus to reduce environmental harm and we as professionals in the construction industry have a huge stake to accomplish this goal. 

Source: 

Architectuur Maken (2016). Façade house in Rotterdam. [online]. Available at: https://architectuurmaken.nl/english/

[Accessed 10 September 2022].

Container city (2022). Container city2.[online].Availableat: http://www.containercity.com/container-city-2

[Accessed 10 September 2022].

Oscar Martinez (2017). Container city in trinity Bouy Wharf in East London. [online]. Available at: https://www.containerpedia.com/container-city-in-trinity-buoy-wharf-in-east-london

[Accessed 10 September 2022].

BIG. Urban Rigger. [online]. Available at: https://big.dk/#projects-con

[Accessed 10 September 2022].

Nicolás Campodonico (2016). St. Bernard Chapel. [online]. Available at: https://nicolascampodonico.com/capilla-san-bernardo-2/

[Accessed 10 September 2022].

Luigi Rosselli Architects (2013-2018). The Beehive. [online]. Available at: https://luigirosselli.com/public-commercial/workspaces/beehive

[Accessed 10 September 2022].

HPA (2015). PROPERLY BREATHING HOUSE. [online]. Available at: https://hpa.vn/en/project/nha-biet-cach-tho/

[Accessed 10 September 2022].

Shanmugam Associates (2009). Rane college. [online]. Available at: http://shanmugamassociates.com/sa_rane-college

[Accessed 10 September 2022].

Archidiares. (2017). Material Pragmatism| Interview with Surya Kakani [YouTube video]. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ppa29vHq6II

[Accessed 10 September 2022].

 

Author

Hetvi is a curious passionate soul with a tint of craziness. An architect who is always there to explore, experiment and learn. A chatterbox who is always ready to make friends and indulge in interesting conversation with them, she is ecstatic when found around books.

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