Floating Homes Made From Coffee Cups with Green Walls

Since 2000, about thirty floating homes have been built out RexWall, a composite fiberglass panel; we have shown a few of them on TreeHugger. Now Michel Kreuger of Amsterdam's Studio Noach has put together a team with Kohler Prize winning architect Anne Holtrop and Le Mur Vegetal inventor Patrick Blanc to build the ultimate floating home that is green in so many ways. The clincher: the Rexwall panel is made of recycled polystyrene hamburger clamshells, coffee cups and packing material. Kreuger calls it "the sustainable solution to packaging pollution."The Design by Anne Holtrop

Originally developed for a site in the Netherlands, Anne Holtrop describes it as "a project to investigate possibilities for living on water. In this study we establish a strong link between the landscape and the houses, which are laid out along an extensive, curving path.

The houses are fully covered with vegetation. Mineral-rich water will be pumped out of the lake for the plants. A planting scheme has been developed in collaboration with botanist Patrick Blanc. The effect of the plants will be double. First, they will make the houses look like green hills floating on the water. This underscores the idea of the landscape approach. Second, the plants produce oxygen, compensating for the CO2 produced when the houses are manufactured.

The design of the house merely consists of an overemphasized structure. This leaves possibilities for use open, yet is characteristic enough to define places within it. More from Anne Holtrop

The structure and concept

Michel Kreuger tells us that the Rexwall panels with recycled polystyrene cores will result in the following benefits:
-100% Recycled
-High insulation
-Frost impervious: because it is flexible, ice freezup around the hull is not a problem.

He claims that the floating houses address four environmental issues:

-CO2/Greenhouse issue

‘Green Floating' objects turn CO2 straight into oxygen, they love it! Bottom line even more then owners and users of the resort expel altogether. 'Green Floating' resorts are CO2 negative.

-The population issue

If you watch the globe, how colourful the continents may be, 70% of our planet is blue and full of water. Lots of water. In total 1370 km3


The Environmental Waste Issue:

"EPS, or expanded polystyrene is one of the most tough waste materials on our planet. On average it takes up to 90 years to biodegrade a polystyrene coffee cup or hamburger shell. However, the product is easy to recycle. In RexwallTM it even serves the planet."

The Energy Issue:

"Fossil fuels are running out at high speed. Energy prices go through the roof. RexwallTM is one of the best insulating building materials available. In combination with our climate system (that uses the amount of energy as an ordinary fridge to heat an entire villa) energy savings are up to 70%!"

North American Availability: Anticipated in 2009 from ::Studio Noach


More on Patrick Blanc in TreeHugger:
Madrid Gets a Vertical Garden Too
A Really Green Building: Quai Branley Office Wing
Design in The New York Times
Azure: The Green Issue
More on Floating Homes in TreeHugger:
Floating Eco- Homes In The Netherlands : TreeHugger
Villa Näckros: Swedish Floating Prefabs
Living With Water Extremes: A Juxtaposition Of Design Responses ...

Tags: Architects | Carbon Neutral | Green Roofs | Netherlands | Recycled Consumer Goods

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