The project engages directly with the theme of aging populations. Special attention is given to accommodating the needs of elderly inhabitants with high quality dwellings. The work is merited for its sensitivity to social dynamics and transformations in lifestyles brought about by increasing urbanization and densification. Also commended is the effort to maintain links between generations, an effort that manifests an ambitious ethical vision.
The Vertical Agriculture at the Old Pretoria West Power Station project transforms a soon to be decommissioned coal bunker of a power station into a vertical hydroponic garden, thereby inverting the attributes of a former polluting facility into a purifying element that continues to be a mechanism for supply of the city’s needs. Grey- and rain-water is used to grow food in close proximity to the urban consumer.
After the devastating earthquake of 2005, which destroyed close to half a million rural houses, training centers for the reconstruction of earthquake resistant private dwellings were created. This project entry couples advanced engineering knowledge with the reliability of traditional materials and skills. Pilot projects strengthen self-reliance in the local population to undertake re-building.
This materials development project succeeded in processing agricultural waste into low-cost construction panels bonded with tannin-based adhesive. Plant-based agricultural wastes from the cultivation of rice, maize and cassava crops provide natural fibers that are a sustainable resource for the production of building materials to achieve a reduction in construction costs, reducing dependence on imported, higher-cost alternatives.
The concept behind this entry turns abandoned urban areas over to agricultural use. Production can even be taken into the interior of buildings using different techniques (e.g. hydroponics). The city-based program offers research opportunities into new plantation methods, leisure areas and street markets – a novel approach to lifecycle thinking.
Urban housing renovation through the creation of an “air suit”, which acts as a new facade skin improving economic and ecological performance. This project is prototype in a 40 year old building with many typical feature of reinforced concrete housing of its generation – with a solution that could readily be transferred.
The innovative proposal for the reuse of an abandoned slaughterhouse in Italy is merited for the effort to bring new life to a historical setting. Noteworthy is the idea of site recycling, a measure that promises to generate new activities and connections within the city. Considerable effort has been made to respond to communal needs while remaining sensitive to the existing context.
This project is a striking concept to move squatters into floating homes on unused coastal areas closer to their source of income. A prototype structure has been completed and now functions as an amphibious medical clinic. Houses out of “found” materials, at low or no-cost, are constructed on buoyant platforms equipped with rainwater collectors, purification units and dry composting toilets.
The entry is a showcase for Northern Arizona University (NAU) research and creates an environment fostering interdisciplinary collaboration between a unique collection of ecological departments and labs. The building integrates innovative sustainable strategies including: low embodied energy materials, efficient mechanical systems, and water saving strategies.
Beside the Monte Rosa glacier in the Swiss Alps, the New Monte Rosa Hut was built by a partnership led by ETH Zurich and completed in September 2009. Switzerland’s most complex wooden structure is covered in a shimmering aluminum shell and features an integrated photovoltaic system. In splendid isolation at 2,883 meters above sea level, the building operates under extreme climatic conditions, is fully self-sufficient, and demonstrates that sustainable construction is possible anywhere.
Foundations 16, the magazine of the Holcim Foundation, is dedicated to providing a glimpse behind the scenes of the 4th International Holcim Awards…
Energy efficiency of the Centre for Green Cities is aided by R40-rated insulation for walls and a wall-to-window …
The regional Holcim Awards 2014 Jury Europe met at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich), Switzerland in June …