Our NxtGen construction system is about:
– Reusable prefabricated standardized parts and assemblies
– Releasable dry connections and mechanical fixtures
– Biobased materials
The most important thing in order to integrate circularity in construction is to change the mind-set and habits of both people working in the construction business as well as their customers. Since such changes are the most difficult ones to achieve, it means that a circular alternative has to be at least as good and preferably even better than the existing practice. And that’s precisely what NxtGen modular construction can offer.
Circular construction means developing, using and reusing buildings and infrastructure without having to deplete natural resources, polluting the environment and affecting ecosystems. Design for Disassembly is a key component of sustainable design. Disassemblability of a product is a function of several parameters such as exertion of manual force for disassembly, degree of precision required for effective tool placement, weight, size, material and shape of components being disassembled.
The lifespan of a structure and building materials got our main focus when we further developed our NxtGen construction system. Indeed, besides a long lifecycle of the initial structure, we wanted to create a building that can be reused, modified or upgraded at some point in time and of which virtually all materials can be either reused, recycled or upcycled at the end of their lifecycle.
How did we achieve that? We made sure that our self-bearing steel and wooden support skeleton and the lay-out of the structure can be modified without having to change the support frame. Our other bio based materials and parts, were carefully assessed and chosen in function of the circularity criteria.
Since load-bearing walls are non-existent in our system it also offers tremendous opportunities for both architects and interior designers in terms of creating different spaces and the actual look of the building.
Smart materials, energy efficiency, reduction of logistics and maintenance costs, are all equally important, and last but not least flexibility. After all, areas and spaces may be subject to various ‘changes’ in the near future and even exposed to changing climate conditions.