Many of the innovations we’re seeing in the property industry relate to sustainability aims, whether it’s using natural building materials or finding multi-purpose uses for pre-existing buildings. With Business Innovation Travel, you can see these projects up-close and speak to the innovators that designed them and learn crucial strategies and lessons from their experiences.
As mentioned, the key trends we’re seeing in property innovation are focused on sustainability. With carbon emissions for concrete buildings being a high contributor to global emissions, it makes sense that companies would look for alternatives like wood. And natural materials don’t just stop outside – developments are also integrating natural materials into the interiors of their buildings.
We’re seeing an emphasis on re-using: re-using steel from recycled items to use as building materials, re-utilising sports facilities to make them multipurpose, and also re-using raw materials. Some developments are including infrastructure that allows residents to re-use rainwater that falls on the property!
A comprehensive approach to property development is also being taken, with developers building properties that use significantly less power in the round (cutting power use by nearly 70% in some cases). And a broader focus on the development of eco-communities – whether that’s eco-homes, eco-villages or even circular cities which prioritise sustainability in their design.
- For utilizing natural materials, in Barcelona, Spain, the Ciderers building is the tallest wooden building in Spain and houses 32 cooperative homes and community spaces.
- Using natural materials indoors, the Renaissance Barcelona Fira hotel has interior spaces fitted with natural vegetation including a vertical garden.
- In Antwerp, Belgium, the Palazzo Verde will use natural materials on its roof by installing a micro forest on its rooftop to purify about 5 tons of CO2 per year!
- In the re-utilisation of buildings, the Johan Cruijff ArenA in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, is being used in multiple ways as both a sports and entertainment venue – and also holds 4,300 solar panels on its retractable roof.
- Similarly, PAKT – an old military hospital and warehouse in Antwerp – has been transformed with the development of farms and ecosystems on its rooftops.
- In limiting energy use, the BowZed development in London, UK, has created a block of zero-fossil energy apartments that don’t require central heating at all.
- Similarly, in Amsterdam, The Edge has officially been classed the most sustainable office building in the world, using 70% less electricity than a normal office.
- And in Malaga, Spain, we will see the first sustainable urban space to implement a Circular City model with the Malaga TechPark, which will be sustainable, eco-efficient, 100% renewable and digital by 2027
Barcelona is one of Europe’s hottest innovation hubs, and a clear hub for innovation in the property industry. For example, in the use of natural materials in buildings, Barcelona has the Ciderers building and the Renaissance Barcelona Fira Hotel mentioned above. Additionally, you can find WALDEN-7, a multi-purpose development on the site of a former concrete factory, and also explore one of the greenest and quietest districts of Barcelona, Sarria-Sant Gervasi neighbourhood.
Sample Program: Barcelona
DEP 09:10 ARR 12:40
Renaissance Fira Hotel
Workshop with Scaled Robotics (Construction automation start-up)
Check-in at hotel
Antwerp is the location for some exciting property projects. Alongside Palazzo Verde, one of the greenest buildings in Belgium, and PAKT, a repurposed old military hospital, it also has the De Vylder Caritas centre, an old psychiatric care centre repurposed as multipurpose space. You can also explore the Green Quarter, a new neighbourhood that symbolizes creativity, architecture and peace.
Sample Program: Antwerp
DEP 06:40 ARR 08:40
Transfer to Antwerp
Workshop with the Greenhouse team
Check-in at hotel
Check-out of hotel
The Green Quarter
Workshop with the BEASt team at the University of Antwerp (Sustainable building research)
DEP 19:40 ARR 21:35
What Your Program Can Include
Every Business Innovation Travel program combines the best of our expertise in travel, business and entertainment.
Many innovations in property are proving successful and encouraging greater focus on this area. It’s a prime time to engage in the sharing of ideas and lessons learned! With A2D, we tailor-make your Business Innovation Travel program to connect you with the projects and developers that can provide you with the inspiration you’re searching for.