Design and construction of an elastic gridshell from reclaimed material

The reuse of discarded components allows material to be saved from the landfill and the manufacturing of new components to be prevented. Still, reuse is only worthwhile if it reclaims all the technology originally embedded in the material, turning a moral issue into an engineered one.

This engineering issue is of a new kind: instead of detailing components from a predefined system, the system must be found from predefined components. In addition, the overall stability of the new system must be ensured although inner mechanical characteristics of components remain unspecified.

A first step of the project designed and built an 11.6m² elastic gridshell from 200 reclaimed skis. Introduced as a proof of concept, this pavilion demonstrated that re-use also concerns structural engineering and is not limited to non-load-bearing systems. The pavilion was presented at the first Architecture Biennale in Lyon in 2017.