A fruitful trip to Barcelona

Project's updates - 08 May 2019

The HOUSEFUL consortium has met in the capital of Catalonia to present the results achieved in the past months

HOUSEFUL partners have met in Barcelona from the 11th to the 12th of April to discuss the progress made in the past months and future work. The consortium was hosted by the consortium member ITeC (The Catalonia Institute of Construction Technology).

HOUSEFUL members on the roof of Els Mestres, one of the project’s demo-buildings. The meeting in Barcelona was a chance for partners to visit the building and discuss the interventions to be implemented by HOUSEFUL.

In the morning of the first day, partners had the chance to visit Els Mestres, one of the buildings where HOUSEFUL technology will be demonstrated. Located in Sabadell, approximately 20 km North of Barcelona, the building consists of eight residential floors with two flats per floor. It is adjacent to an educational centre and was initially intended as a teachers’ residence. The building has become increasingly disused over recent years and all flats need deep refurbishment.

The gathering at the ITeC premises started later in the afternoon, and partners had the chance to share the main results achieved since the last project meeting in Vienna.

HOUSEFUL partners have made significant advancements on the identification and selection of innovative circular solutions for buildings already available in the market. In parallel, work has been done on the definition of the basic circular principles following the new methodology to evaluate the building’s circularity.

Partners have also worked on the sociopolitical study of the HOUSEFUL front-running buildings and the consequent analysis of stakeholders at each of these sites.  A survey was launched to direct project partners and their wider networks in order to establish a network map of the stakeholders and to know who has the influence, power and interest in the demonstration sites of the front running buildings. An exhaustive analysis of the results obtained in the surveys was also done to gain a first understanding of the behavior patterns of the stakeholders, what motivates them to participate and their acceptance profiles for circular solutions in the building sector, as well as obtaining a list of those actors that would like to continue being engaged in the project. The first results have shown that: i) there is a high familiarity with the circular economy approach amongst the stakeholders surveyed; ii) the application of Circular Economy solutions in the housing sector is seen as very motivating; iii) circular solutions are highly applicable and the stakeholders surveyed viewed these solutions as highly beneficial; iv) the stakeholders believe that related risks as lower than the perceived benefits.

For three of the four demo buildings, an audit on circular economy was concluded and work has been carried out on advanced BIM models and material passports.

Moreover, progress has been made on the market study of Spain and Austria, which will be delivered in October, and on the development of the new systemic services of HOUSEFUL solutions. Finally, the development of HOUSEFUL’s SaaS is also progressing well.

The creation of a Collaborative Community of Housing Experts (CCHE) that will provide feedback to the project is ongoing. The CCHE will also be involved in the selection of Follower Buildings that will replicate the HOUSEFUL solutions.

The gathering turned out to be a very fruitful occasion to exchange ideas and collaborate together to boost the global uptake of a circular approach in the housing sector. Next HOUSEFUL meeting will be in Autumn 2019.