Tapestry of Timber

a bio-based alternative to the Dutch residence

The Netherlands is on the eve of a huge housing challenge. One million houses have to be built in the Netherlands over the next 20 years. The ground-level single-family home is currently popular: 65% of the Dutch housing stock consists of this type of home.
In addition to building homes, the Netherlands has another major task, namely combating climate change as a result of greenhouse gas emissions. If the one million homes were to be built in a traditional way, an enormous amount of CO2 would be emitted. This not only happens as a result of the chemical reaction with which cement is made, but also due to all transport movements and processing of the heavy conventional materials.
We learn early in school that trees convert CO2 under the influence of sunlight into glucose, which forms the basis of wood. If we make building materials out of it, we can capture the CO2 for dozens, perhaps hundreds of years!

Is it possible to construct the Dutch terraced house not from traditional materials, but rather from biobased materials, and thereby contribute to combating the greenhouse effect? Which biobased building materials are available in the Netherlands? What does a single-family home designed with those materials look like? What opportunities do these materials offer to the detailing and design of the exterior and interior?

By 2040, one million houses must be built in the Netherlands.

The archetypal shape of the Dutch terraced house, namely a narrow volume with a pitched roof, is taken as the starting point for the biobased version of the terraced house. This shape has been retained as much as possible in the elaboration by "punching out the window and door openings from the mass", while applying the same material as uniformly as possible to both facade openings and the facade. In order to be able to adapt the home to the wishes of the various buyers, it is also possible to add elements to the roof and to use different facade materials.
The layout of the house is focused on efficiency and free zoning. On the ground floor, the partition between kitchen and entrance is optional, and the same applies to the position of the kitchen. The same applies to the layout on the first floor, where the amount of rooms can vary depending on the choice of buyers.
Various choice options for façade materials and additions to the volume result in a large number of variations, from a house with a black-wooden façade with a clear gabled roof to a brick version with a large dormer window, to a fully glazed house. All variants have large windows, carefully detailed façade openings, an integrated gutter, but all different. The houses are switchable, but can also be used individually.
The houses can be merged into a car-free urban development plan in which cars are parked at their edges. Slow traffic paths with local expansion offer public-collective space. The different homes offer a varied picture, such that “boring” is found nowhere in the neighborhood; everyone has their own place.

The design of a customized house that can be efficiently produced and built with biobased materials available in the Netherlands

Owning your own home in its own place in a varied neighborhood with ample amount of greenery and public space.

Two options have been studied to construct the biobased home. The first approach is to start from a maximally prefabricated house that can also easily be "mass customized". The ideal material to construct this house is in CLT because of its all-rounded strengths.
The second option of the biobased home examines how a house can be designed in which the most efficient material is applied for every element in the house from a structural point of view, with the restriction that it is made entirely from biobased materials, and therefore still stores CO2.

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