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People's Pavilion; People's Pavilion;

People's Pavilion, Eindhoven

Structural design for temporary building completely from borrowed material

In collaboration with Dutch architects Overtreders W and Bureau SLA, Arup has delivered the structural design of the main pavilion for the Dutch Design Week 2017 in Eindhoven. The challenge of the project was to create a pavilion, with high architectural quality, from 100% borrowed materials. After the festival the building had to be dismantled and all materials returned to their suppliers in their original state.

Completely made from borrowed materials, our structural design implicated a circular design with a close to zero carbon footprint. We explored the possibilities of structuring a safe building without damaging the materials in any way. This meant that we had to devise a construction technique that didn't use glue, screws or nails. The frame is build up from standard off-the-shelve timber sections of different trade lengths tied together with steel straps to make longer and stronger composite elements. The columns consist of 7 meter tall prefab concrete foundation piles. Steel rods from a demolished office building are reused as cross bracing. The composite timber beams, concrete columns and cross bracing were tied together using high capacity ratchet straps to create a save and sufficiently stiff structure to withstand strong wind conditions. This unconventional system required our calculations to be validated , which was done by executing several experiments in cooperation with the Technical University Eindhoven.

The glass roof was borrowed from a greenhouse supplier and the glass lower facade, saved from a demolished office building. The  plastic shingles on the façade were made from plastic waste collected by the inhabitants of Eindhoven. 

After the event, the building has been successfully dismantled and all the materials returned to the suppliers. By ways of borrowing and returning materials the pavilion is a great example of circular design and construction, making sure the materials keep their high value in the chain.

Watch: This video illustrates the concept of the structural design of the People's Pavilion of Dutch Design Week and how it is built. A simple simulation shows how the structure keeps stable in for example strong wind conditions. ©Arup