Local materials represent the cultural and natural heritage in the built environment and are part of a sustainable aesthetic. Natural materials are not only healthy, breathable, regenerative and climate compatible, when locally sourced they also have low and transparent environmental and social costs.
This long term project wants to bridge the gap between the city and it’s hinterland. Stimulating a crossover of knowledge, techniques and interests between two worlds that nowadays merely co-exist.
The project starts by analysing common and natural material flows in and around a specific urban region, in this case the Randstad metropolitan area in The Netherlands. The objective is to increase awareness about the difference in social and ecological impact of common building materials and natural alternatives.
The second phase breathes life into the findings. Stimulating interaction between producers, experts, scientists, policymakers and designers. Joint knowledge will be translated into educational programs, design tools, architecture competitions and example projects.
The ultimate goal is to make the method replicable and to apply it to urban regions worldwide.
Currently I am working on an initiative that intends to contribute to the material transition by promoting natural building materials from one's own region. A grant has been received from the Creative Industries Fund NL to set up the project.