We created this installation with Unbuilders and Workbench Studio for the Buildex Conference in Vancouver. Our goal was to demonstrate how the design and construction industry can ‘re-grow’ buildings using deconstructed materials that would otherwise be discarded in the 4 million tonnes of demolition waste that Canada produces each year.
Unused and discarded building material is a huge problem within the construction industry and the time for a traditional linear model of take / make / dispose is over. Investing our energy in the circular economy – where we repurpose and reuse existing resources – is one of the greatest tools that we already have to build low carbon buildings. Rising from a pile of ‘waste’, a large canopy spans above the exhibition. The structure is built from timber salvaged locally here in Vancouver and is designed to be built as well as deconstructed.
"At MGA we often talk about the use of timber as an opportunity to literally grow our buildings from the power of the sun. What this installation explores is how we might ‘re-grow’ our buildings using deconstructed existing materials."
The structure provides a roof canopy, vertical walls, and a floor – and appears as an abstracted tree. At its core, this installation is a representation that buildings are not just shelter, they are valuable material banks that can be reused again and again. Touring around the base of the canopy, the narrative of the circular economy is presented. A story that takes us from tree, to extraction, to fabrication, to building, to “waste,” and finally to the opportunity to build again, which is our vision our future. There’s so much possibility when we look at design and construction this way.