Sail-shaped building façade design in white and blue

Designing temporary structures means finding flexible solutions and recyclable materials in order to avoid waste. It is exactly what DUS Architects of Amsterdam did when coming up with the façade design of the Mobile European Building, the place where the presidency meetings of the European Union Council took place for the first half of 2016.

Fabric and bioplastic used in the façade of temporary building

Since the EU meetings were to move to Slovakia for the second half of the year, it was important that this temporary structure used reusable materials. DUS Architects opted for a combination of tensile fabric, often found in mobile structures, and an innovative 3-D printed bioplastic.

3-D printed materials in white and blue façade

The result was a façade architecture that catches in its lines the silhouette of sailing ships. The choice was guided by the tradition of this Dutch area, where sailing ships were once built.

Benches along the front of the building

The façade structure consists of large fabric panels curved at the bottom to create the look of sheltering tents. In these crevices, three-dimensional printed structures create a blue, faceted background that takes the sailing ship metaphor one step further. These surfaces continue into the foreground, giving shape to long benches.

Perspective showing structures reminiscent of sailing ships

While 3-D printing on a small scale using fused deposition modelling (or FUD) is not necessarily news anymore, doing it at this scale is still a novelty. The studio collaborated with Henkel (a company also concerned with sustainability) in creating an entirely bio-based plastic material as the base for the façade structures. The material is made of linseed oil and can be shredded in order to be reused in the 3-D printing process.

Benches made of recyclable materials

Created in collaboration with the building company Heijmans, the Mobile European Building façade is an example of inspiring design and smart use of innovative materials.

Sail-shaped bioplastic building front in white and blue

Designer: DUS Architects and Heijmans
All photos:

Please take a look at our Before and After images of selected projects from 2015 HERE.

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