Rethinking lightweight: Exploration of circular design strategies in temporary structures

Authors: Maren Zywietz, Karsten Schlesier, Annette Bögle

The growing material scarcity in construction is a result of resource depletion over many years. This paper examines how our design and construction practices can promote circular material use to address the issue. It contrasts circular design with lightweight structures and uncovers their potential for sustainability. Both approaches share a holistic outlook, suggesting that circular design can stem from lightweight design principles. However, efficient material use in lightweight structures isn’t enough for circularity, which requires a design process that takes dismantling and recycling into account. A case study, the research pavilion, demonstrates how reimagining lightweight structures is achievable for closing material loops.

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