Nederlands Instituut voor Ecologie (NIOO-KNAW)
Commissioned by the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences to Claus and Kaan Architecten, the Nioo-Knaw is a remarkable example of sustainable architecture applied to the field of education and research.
Built between 2007 and 2010 the institute was opened only in 2011. The philosophy between the conception of the whole structure it's the cradle-to-cradle approach, that aim to replicate the natural cycle of resource regeneration in the daily maintenance of the structure. Everything in the Nioo-Knaw institute gets a second life, from rain water to human organic waste.
The building is mostly powered by solar energy and daylight is used, when possible, as the sole lightning source for the public areas. Sunlight is directed by wide overhangs made of plato-wood.
The temperature of the building is maintained constantly at 18-20°C thanks to a technique called concrete core activation. This method regulates the water stored in the tanks of the external research field, injecting it in different parts of the building when necessary, avoiding the waste of water and electricity.
The most interesting side of the Nioo-Knaw is the constant evolution of the building in terms of sustainability, evolution that is made possible by the team of researchers that work everyday in the structure.