The Circular Economy takes a whole-life, circular approach to construction, operation and the end of use of buildings. The use of natural materials that can be reused or returned to the earth, free from volatile organic substances, solvents and other harmful chemicals, also has a positive impact on indoor air quality as well as wider health and wellbeing benefits. Circular construction strives to keep materials in a high-value, and useful state for as long possible. It also aims to use low carbon materials, such as those with sequestered carbon (bio-based products), reused or repurposed materials or those with recycled content to reduce the overall embodied carbon of the building. Materials used should not be environmentally problematic now or in the future and designed so they can be easily recovered at the end of their lives. The design philosophy also extends to the entire building with spaces designed with reuse, flexibility and adaptability in mind.
Collective Architecture have developed a specialist Construction Industry guide on the Circular Economy for Construction Professionals. This work builds on our extensive knowledge of resources and waste, to help de-mystify the circular economy and help organisations at a board and operational level to realise its opportunities. We work directly with clients and design teams to identify, evaluate circular economy opportunities.