UP STRAW: Urban and Public Buildings in Straw

Project Summary

STRAW: premium biobased building material

Creating a healthy and comfortable inner climate in buildings and reducing CO2 can go hand-in-hand! Building with straw, in combination with clay, has this effect.

CO2 reduction takes place by optimal insulation and by the CO2 contained in the natural material straw itself. The use of straw and clay creates a healhy, dampopen inner climate.

Straw is widely available and can be applied in new constructions (houses, offices, schools, public buildings). Straw is also applicable for the insulation of existing buildings. Straw can be used immediately from the production location (farmland), without a further processing.

This makes straw the premium biobased building material.


UP STRAW: a collaborative approach to creating straw awareness and use

Heating all of the buildings in NWE accounts for about 15% of the GHG emissions. The implementatie/application of straw as building insulation helps to reduce that in a natural way.

We will demonstratie that in five projects: buildings made of bales, wrapped in straw and created with prefab straw panels. Ready for implementation in the building industry.

Educational programs for architects, constructors and straw craftsman will facilitate knowledge development. University modulair program elements make students aware of the possibilities and application conditions.

Implementation of straw elements in building methodology and Building Information Modelling software will facilitate the use of straw elements in the building industry.

Communicating the advantages, application and the effects of building with straw will create interest in the possibilities and application.


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Project Partners

Lead partner

Organisation Address Email Website
Centre National de la Construction en Paille 69 bis rue des Déportés et des Internés
stephanie.ventre@cncp-feuillette.fr www.cncp-feuillette.fr
Name Contact Name Email Country
Strobouw Nederland Wouter Klijn wouter@strobouw.nl Netherlands
Plankstetten Benedictine Abbey Benedikt Kaesberg Benedikt.Kaesberg@kloster-plankstetten.de Germany
Hastings Borough Council Rachel Ellis Rachel.Ellis@groundwork.org.uk United Kingdom
The School of Natural Building Eileen Sutherland eileen@schoolofnaturalbuilding.co.uk United Kingdom
Gemeente Tilburg Ruud Oerlemans ruud.oerlemans@tilburg.nl Netherlands
Cluster Eco-construction Hervé-Jacques Poskin hj@ecoconstruction.be Belgium

Action & Activity

De Roomley Sports-hall (NL)

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The largest renovation with Dutch straw ! The use of straw in the built environment was still a completely new idea for the Municipality of Tilburg at the time. Ultimately, however, it tied in seamlessly with ambitions the municipality has been embracing for over 10 years. Read More

Construction site visit in the German monastery with 60 visitors

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On March 20, about 60 people interested in construction, building experts and journalists participated in a construction site tour at Plankstetten Monastery in Bavaria, Germany. 🎤After the welcoming speech and introduction into straw bale building, the visitors walked in small groups through the shell of the building, saw the construction progress and a live demonstration of the plaster application. Read More

The second MOOC session - Building for change - Naturally

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The first session of this bilingual French/English MOOC held last October recorded nearly 4000 registrations, with an overall satisfaction rate of 89%. Design professionals (architects, engineers, etc.) were the most represented professional category (49%), followed by students (15%). This second session, for which registrations start on 4 January, is enriched by the remarks and suggestions of the users. The realisation of this MOOC was entrusted to ACCORT-Paille, the French partner of the UP STRAW project, which is the result of a work collaborative work of the European partners of the project. Register for the MOOC Building for change - Naturally: > Registration period: from 4 January to 19 February 2021 > Training period: from 26 January to 23 March 2021 Read More


Visit of 3 buildings Almere / Netherlands

, Almere / Netherlands

At September 28th there was again a fully booked excursion (45 visitors) to 3 straw buildings at Almere Oosterwold. This is an area where they have chosen for an experiment with a high level of sustainability and a combination of self-support in living and small-scale agriculture. The 3 buildings that could be visited are build in different way’s with different techniques and could be seen in different stage of completion. In advance there was a presentation about SBN and about the visit of this afternoon and a more detailed presentation about the construction of the first home that we could visit. At the first building the prefabricated panels of straw for the floor wall and roof were just installed. Most of straw surface will be plastered with a layer of earthplaster before they are covered with a roof or cladding or a floor. The second building that could be visited was at the beginning of the completion phase. Foundation was done by a contractor but most of the other jobs have been executed by the owner and his friends. The main structure of this building is a wooden-construction with post and beams with a strawbale infill. The roof was insulated with loose straw. The outside will be partly covered with wooden cladding and partly with lime plaster. At walking distance, we could visit the 3rd building. Here are several buildings designed around a small open area. The first building that has been completed is a bakery. But also, the foundation and some wood construction of the next buildings (dwelling) has been started. At the bakery, the main structure is made of laminated wood and the secondary construction is made of I-beams with straw-bale infill. The straw has an earth plaster on both sides and is covered at the inner side with Fermacel and at the outside there will be a inlands wooden cladding. The roof is covered with profiled steel.
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Groundbreaking ceremony for largest straw-insulated building in southern / Germany

, Plankstetten Monastery

Numerous representatives from politics, church, public authorities, architects, planners and construction companies came on Sept 28th 2019 for the groundbreaking ceremony for the future house St. Wunibald in the Plankstetten Monastery. At the same time, the 25th anniversary of the Abbey’s Thanksgiving Market was celebrated with 15.000 visitors. House St. Wunibald is currently the largest straw-insulated building in southern Germany that is being built. From 2021 on it will offer space for a kindergarten, the parish administration and 30 new guest rooms. The new building corresponds to the focus of the monastery on sustainability and will be a European-wide example of climate-friendly construction, explained Abbot Beda. After years of construction planning, the search for financing and last but not least the securing of the western slope in the construction area, the construction of the new building can now finally begin, said Abbot Beda. The Bavarian Minister of Finance and Home Affairs Albert Füracker, Vice-President of the Rhineland Palatinate state parliament Christoph Reichert, Member of the German Parliament Alois Karl, District Administrator Willi Gailler and Mayor Ludwig Eisenreich came to the groundbreaking ceremony with city councilors. The diocese of Eichstätt was present by General Vicar Peter Michael Huber. As in previous sections of the general renovation of the monastery complex, it is important for the monastic community to build this new building in an environmentally sustainable and energy-efficient manner. Therefore, the building is built with timber from the monastery forests and the walls are insulated with straw bales from the ecologically managed fields of the monastery property. Energetically, the building reaches the passive house standard. Long history of construction project The first city council resolution for the new construction of the kindergarten Plankstetten goes back to the 24th of February 2015. On November 22nd 2017 the construction site was blessed. Since then, there have been many challenges, including a landslide and rising construction costs. The Minister of Finance and Home Affairs Füracker confirmed, however, that the support from the federal government and the Free State of Bavaria were justified. Today is a big holiday for the abbey Plankstetten, for the young families with small children in the region and a holiday for the city Berching said Mayor Ludwig Eisenreich. Like Rome, Plankstetten Monastery was not built in one day, said Member of German Parliament Alois Karl. He also supported the necessary refinancing, because "a piece of jewelery for the whole region should not be neglected", so the deputy. With the Interreg project UP STRAW the EU also contributes a part to the construction costs that in total amount to several million Euros. After the groundbreaking ceremony, the 25th Thanksgiving Market of the Abbey was opened by the mayor of the city of Berching. Around 80 exhibitors presented their products. On the UP STRAW fair stand the 15.000 visitors could get information about straw bale building and the EU project.
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Visit of construction site Emmanuel d'Alzon / France

, St Médard en Jalles

This new establishment offers its students an innovative project built on excellence and well-being, with 6100m² including 4600m2 built in wood and straw frame. The purpose of this visit was to network and facilitate business meetings for construction professionals and institutional investors. More than 70 people participated. As well architects, design offices and other building professionals.
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European Straw Bale Gathering 2019

, Todmorden, West Yorkshire, UK

ESBG 2019 is all about: - Exploring healthy public buildings made from straw - Raising awareness of the benefits of constructing public buildings from straw - Highlighting features & benefits of straw bale buildings - Understanding public procurement, building regulations, green mortgages and insurance - Inspirational case studies - Networking for professionals and students in the sector We hope to see you there.
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Visit of the construction site / Germany

, Salzkotten -

Salzkotten, July 15th 2019. One of the first straw insulated family homes in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia opened its construction site to the public on July 14th 2019. About 600 visitors participated in the presentations about straw bale building and showed high interest in the technique. “If I would build a home I would choose building with straw”, was a statement often heard by visitors when asked about their opinion. The mayor of the city of Salzkotten was very interested in the construction technique as well as other local authorities such as members of the County Council, the board of works and the state parliament of North Rhine-Westphalia. Among the visitors were several crafts people, some of which asked about straw bale building courses. The event programme included practical demonstrations and a fair with stands of the Professional Association of Straw Bale Building (FASBA), the builders’ merchant Baustroh GmbH, the straw producing farmer and a local eco building supplies store. Children experimented with straw and clay, local musicians played and the guests could purchase eco-foods from regional produce. Several media paid attention to the open day at the construction site. Five local newspapers and the main local radio station reported about straw bale building covering about 185.000 people in the region.
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