Dutch designer envisions biomaterial skyscrapers

October 25, 2021 |

In the Netherlands, a biomaterials advocate says buildings could be completely made from plant-based products and natural mineral materials. 

Lucas DeMan, CEO of Biobased Creations, tells architecture and design publication dezeen materials like hemp, straw, lumber, and mycelium could replace products such as steel and cement that contribute to the construction industry’s poor environmental performance. 

Biobased Creations is showcasing a small concept home at Dutch Design Week, but DeMan says larger structures like office buildings can also be made from renewable materials.  “For bigger skyscrapers, I think you still need concrete for the foundations,” he added. “But the concrete can be without cement, so the impact is way less. Practically, it is already possible.”

Currently, biobased materials account for about 3% of the construction industry, according to Pascal Leboucq, the company’s head of design. 

Biobased Creations concept home features 100 plant-based materials, including algae, bacteria, jute, linen and sewage.  “I think the biggest shift will be our concept of time,” DeMan said. “Now we want to build everything forever, for eternity. I think we have to embrace the fact that things are temporary.”

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Category: Chemicals & Materials

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