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A circular pavilion made with recycled glass

A group of students, researchers and professors of KIT Karlsruhe created a circular pavilion made with recycled materials, including glass panels made from recycled bottles and industrial glass waste.

The pavilion is built for the 2019 German Federal Garden Show (BUGA) in Heilbronn, located in the Mehr.WERT.Garten (Added.VALUE.Garden). The so-called Mehr.WERT.Pavilion is the main element in the exhibition focused on local and global resource use, alternative materials as well as their applications in a circular design and construction.

The aim of the pavilion is to prove that it is already possible to design and construct according to the principles of the circular economy. On the one hand, the pavilion makes use of the existing urban mine: all materials used in the project have already undergone at least one lifecycle, either in the same or in a different form. On the other hand, it acts as a material depot, since the materials will become available again at the end of the exhibition. The materials used in the construction of the structure have been specified and used in such a way that allows their complete re-introduction into pure and type-sorted material streams for reuse, recycling, or biodegradation.

The pavilion’s building materials can be separated into four groups. The load-bearing structure is largely made of reused steel originating from a dismantled coal-fired power plant in north-western Germany. It consists of four inclined support beams that fan out like trees and are connected by a rigid steel frame structure.

The façades and roof are clad in panels made from recycled glass bottles and industrial glass waste, like Glaskeramik (find this material in our collection here). Inside the pavilion, there is furniture made from recycled HDPE plastic waste, and the chairs are 3D printed from household waste. Lastly, the floor of the pavilion as well as the landscape design of the garden forms an assemblage of various reused and recycled materials and products made from mineral construction and demolition waste.

Mehr.WERT.Pavillon serves as a laboratory and test run for future construction projects as well as their building processes. The aim is to discuss important issues of construction and the associated use of resources with decision-makers from politics, construction planning and implementation and to develop new innovative concepts, applications and methods, both in practice and in teaching. The pavilion design originated in the design studio Building from Waste of the Professorship of Sustainable Construction at KIT Karlsruhe. It was further developed by KIT students Lisa Krämer, Simon Sommer, Philipp Staab, Sophie Welter, and Katna Wiese in collaboration with the Professorships Tragkonstruktionen (Prof. Matthias Pfeifer / Certification engineer) and Bautechnologie (Prof. Rosemarie Wagner / Structural form finding), as well as the office 2hs Architekten.

Photos: Felix Heisel / Zooey Braun