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May 11, 2021 | Proposition for Circular Construction | Zurich, Switzerland

Philippe Block on how to “Produce Leaner”

Philippe Block on how to “Produce Leaner”Philippe Block pushes boundaries. He calls into question the very postulates underlying design and what is currently considered feasible and desirable in construction. He urges all actors in the industry to “produce leaner” and move from a wasteful take-make-throw model to a circular take-make-repeat economy. This transition to circular construction can be achieved systematically by taking into consideration aspects including raw material consumption, environmental impact of a material over its lifecycle, as well as the structural geometry of building design.

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May 05, 2021 | Project Update | Augst, Switzerland

Phase 1 of Roman settlement excavation center completed

Phase 1 of Roman settlement excavation center completedPart workspace, part archive, part exhibition gallery, the Archaeological Center Augusta Raurica represents the first headquarters for a significant cultural institution safeguarding the largest Roman site in Switzerland. Phase one of construction of the excavation center in the village of Augst near Basel, Switzerland of 4,200 square meters is completed – and a further 5,200 square meters are currently being added as phase two of the LafargeHolcim Awards prize winning project by Karamuk Kuo Architects from Zurich.

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April 28, 2021 | Proposition for Circular Construction | Paris, France

Anne Lacaton on the philosophy of “Always Transform”

Anne Lacaton on the philosophy of “Always Transform”Celebrated for placing sustainability and humanity at the heart of their practice, Anne Lacaton and Jean-Philippe Vassal are the prestigious Pritzker Prize for Architecture laureates of 2021.

At a time when construction is still generating almost 40% of all waste to landfill globally, and when governments are recognizing the challenges of resource efficiency in the push to achieve sustainability goals, their maxim of “never demolish, always transform” strikes a resounding note in favour of circular construction.

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April 19, 2021 | New European Bauhaus | Brussels, Belgium

LafargeHolcim Foundation joins the New European Bauhaus as an Official Partner

LafargeHolcim Foundation joins the New European Bauhaus as an Official PartnerThe New European Bauhaus is an environmental, economic and cultural project, aimed at combining design, sustainability, accessibility, affordability and investment. The project help to deliver the European Green Deal – a set of policies set out by the European Commission to make Europe climate neutral by 2050.

The LafargeHolcim Foundation for Sustainable Construction has been selected to become an Official Partner of the New European Bauhaus and will act as a promoter and key dialogue stakeholder throughout the initiative.

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April 06, 2021 | The Materials Book | Cambridge, United Kingdom

Bringing together small improvements to deliver transformations in performance

Bringing together small improvements to deliver transformations in performanceConstruction is a ten-trillion-dollar industry that underpins economies and worker productivity. Yet despite its importance, construction sector productivity has been flatlining – and practices that have transformed other sectors, including automation and lean principles, have not yet been adopted. Marginal Gains in Construction (MaGIC) brings together multiple programs of work that examine mainstream construction, rather than its glamorous extremes, to achieve maximum impact.

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March 17, 2021 | The Pritzker Architecture Prize | Chicago, IL, USA

Lacaton & Vassal win “Nobel Prize” for Architecture

Lacaton & Vassal win “Nobel Prize” for ArchitectureAnne Lacaton and Jean-Phillipe Vassal have been selected as 2021 Pritzker Architecture Prize laureates and are acclaimed for their work on public housing and sustainable design. Under the mantra of “Never demolish, never remove or replace, always add, transform, and reuse!” – their approach pursues economic, social and environmental performance that addresses the challenges of building smarter, greener and for all.

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March 10, 2021 | Global LafargeHolcim Awards 2021 | Zurich, Switzerland

Hybrid meeting to select world’s best in sustainable design

Hybrid meeting to select world’s best in sustainable designThe jury of nine experts are currently selecting the global prize winners in the 6th International LafargeHolcim Awards for Sustainable Construction. The 33 finalist projects from 25 countries are displayed as a poster exhibition in Zurich and are also made available via an online platform for jury members who were unable to travel due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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March 02, 2021 | The Materials Book | San Rafael, CA, USA

The new carbon architecture

The new carbon architectureIn the effort to halt and reverse climate change, the embodied carbon of building materials matters more than anyone had thought. We are in technological reach, within a generation, of creating buildings and cities that generate more energy than they use, reverse the emissions engine, cool the climate and make nicer places to live and work.

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February 23, 2021 | The Materials Book | New Delhi, India

Greener and more circular approaches to building materials

Greener and more circular approaches to building materialsThe Society for Technology & Action for Rural Advancement (TARA), a three-decade- old social enterprise based in New Delhi, develops greener technologies and processes for the construction industry. Three of these – EcoKilns, Limestone Calcined Clay Cement (LC3), and new methods for the reuse of construction waste – have been proven at commercial scale and are being adopted by companies small and large.

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February 21, 2021 | The Materials Book | Lausanne, Switzerland

Monitoring material flows and their regenerative values

Monitoring material flows and their regenerative valuesIn a world where data is ubiquitous, it might seem easy to monitor material and energy flows through urban systems. Policymakers and society as a whole rarely acknowledge resource, energy, or water scarcity. More often than not, they are not properly measured, or only partially so, even though a misleading indicator can be as detrimental as no measure at all: both can steer us in the wrong direction.

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February 16, 2021 | Board Update | Sydney, Australia

Maria Atkinson AM to chair Board of the LafargeHolcim Foundation

Maria Atkinson AM to chair Board of the LafargeHolcim FoundationThe LafargeHolcim Foundation for Sustainable Construction ensures that its activities are aligned with the leading-edge of sustainable development across architectural, scientific, cultural and policy concerns. The important role of setting strategic direction is the responsibility of the Board of the LafargeHolcim Foundation.

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February 16, 2021 | The Materials Book | Paris, France

Reducing the embodied emissions of the built environment

Reducing the embodied emissions of the built environmentThe global urban population is projected to increase by 57% to 2.4 billion in the next 30 years – and material consumption is predicted to grow even faster. Without a new approach, the high demand for raw materials far exceeds what the planet can sustainably provide. A promising opportunity for reducing carbon emissions in the built environment and infrastructure is incorporating the principles of the circular economy into all phases of a building’s cycle, which can help meet the needs of the built space while contributing to the goal of carbon neutrality.

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February 11, 2021 | Video series | Zurich, Switzerland

Ideas on how to build greener and smarter

Ideas on how to build greener and smarterBuildings and infrastructure account for almost 40% of global greenhouse gas emissions and the sector consumes finite resources at the rate of 40 billion tons of raw material every year. The LafargeHolcim Foundation for Sustainable Construction has produced six short videos that each focus on an important aspect of circular materials flows. The videos follow-on from expert discussions at the LafargeHolcim Forum on Re-materializing Construction and cover a selection of solutions to help reach net-zero targets for the building and infrastructure sector.

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February 09, 2021 | LafargeHolcim Awards | Zurich, Switzerland

Focus on low-carbon construction and circular material flows in LafargeHolcim Awards competition

Focus on low-carbon construction and circular material flows in LafargeHolcim Awards competitionA jury of nine experts will meet to select the global prize winners of the 6th International LafargeHolcim Awards for Sustainable Construction. 33 finalist projects from 25 countries will take part in the global phase of the competition. The LafargeHolcim Awards promotes innovation in how the built environment is engineered and designed – a crucial requirement to enable the transition to low-carbon construction and circular material flows.

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December 29, 2020 | Promoting Sustainable Design since 2003 | Zurich, Switzerland

Wishing you all the best for a safe, happy and prosperous New Year

Wishing you all the best for a safe, happy and prosperous New YearThe LafargeHolcim Foundation for SustainableConstruction looks forward to doing its part in 2021 to promote Carbon Neutral Construction that reduces CO2 in materials and processes; Circular Construction that recycles materials such as building and demolition waste; and Design Innovation & Digital Design to build more with less.

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December 08, 2020 | The Materials Book | Cairo, Egypt

An urban metabolism study in Cairo

An urban metabolism study in CairoAlthough cities are engines of economic development and concentrations of human activities, they are also hubs for consumption with the resulting environmental degradation. An urban metabolism study of two diverse districts of Cairo – a formal district and an informal one – aims to understand flows in these districts and propose locally-responsive interventions.

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December 03, 2020 | The Materials Book | Zurich, Switzerland

Reconnecting energy and climate to architectural design

Reconnecting energy and climate to architectural designBuildings consume energy in two main ways. Firstly, through their use of building materials and the energy required for the construction process, and secondly through the operation of the building. A large (and growing) contributor to this skyrocketing energy demand is the rapid growth and reliance on mechanical air-conditioning.

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November 12, 2020 | LafargeHolcim Roundtable | Zurich, Switzerland

Experts from academia and LafargeHolcim shape the next Forum of the LafargeHolcim Foundation

Experts from academia and LafargeHolcim shape the next Forum of the LafargeHolcim FoundationExperts including members of the Academic Committee (AC) of the LafargeHolcim Foundation and from top management of the LafargeHolcim Group took an active role in the first ever “internal” Roundtable for Sustainable Construction led by Marilyne Andersen, professor at EPFL Lausanne. The virtual meeting was the launchpad to define topics and speakers for the next symposium of the global LafargeHolcim Foundation – the LafargeHolcim Forum on “Re-manufacturing Construction” is scheduled for early 2022 in São Paulo, Brazil. The Forum will focus on sustainable construction in the scientific field to promote interdisciplinary dialog, bring forward new ideas, and examine potential solutions.

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November 01, 2020 | Foundations 24 | Eclepens, Switzerland

October 20, 2020 | Foundations 24 | Zurich, Switzerland

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NEST HiLo roof: Construction of the cable net © Block Research Group, ETH Zurich / Photo …

NEST HiLo roof: Construction of the cable net © Block Research Group, ETH Zurich / Photo by Juney Lee.

Latest Video
Philippe Block Audio Interview

Listen to the 4-minute interview with Philippe Block: “For too long, we’ve ignored what materials want to do”.

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