Circular construction is an important factor in the transition to a circular economy. In fact, over 50% of our CO2 emissions come from the materials we use. The production of building materials has a significant impact. Together with the construction industry, we are looking for solutions that focus on the recycling and reuse of valuable building materials.

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Projects circular construction

CiS²AR – Towards Circular, Sustainable, Smart and Reversible Buildings

Client: Vlaio/Flux 50
Partners: VITO, Th!nkE, Ecosource, Kamp C, Ahrend
Period: 2019 – 2021

"Design, develop and implement the building that will last a lifetime and be ready to integrate the energy technologies and innovations of today and tomorrow, even without knowing what they will be," that is the main goal of what this partnership aims to achieve in just over 2 years. This feasibility study will serve as a framework to evaluate the state of circularity, sustainability, smartness (energy efficiency and smart/flexible energy systems) and reversibility. It identifies solutions for missing elements, materials, components, energy systems and assesses the feasibility of integrated elements with interchangeable and exchangeable connections for technologies (water, heating, cooling, data and electricity). The interest lies in the potential of a collaborative approach whereby the various partners retain their product ranges but ensure that they create synergy when used together, and whereby developments towards marketable products are jointly initiated.


Support for circularity and change-oriented construction

Fase A: design of an assisted living facility evaluation

Client: archipelago architects
Period: 2020 -  2021

archipelago architects wants to map the relevance of circular strategies on healthcare architecture and infrastructure. In order to do so, they want a substantiated argumentation based on LCC and LCA analyses in order to objectively assess the effective impact of these strategies. VITO uses its expertise to test these concepts against the concrete design of a residential care home.

Circulair building Kamp C  

Consultancy to a construction consortium

Client: Kamp C 
Partners:VITO, Beneens, TEN, Streng-th, Terra Energy, Muurtuin, Westarchitectuur, tenerga
Period: 2020

Kamp C will build the first fully circular commercial building in Flanders at its site in Westerlo. Last year, Kamp C issued a circular tender in order to choose a suitable construction consortium to carry out this innovative assignment. The tender was finalised on 17/01/2020 and awarded to the Kamp Circulair consortium. VITO supported this consortium during the tender in the field of circularity.



Client:  EC – H2020
Partners:Tecnalia (lead), VITO + 33 other partners:

Construction, renovation and demolition waste (CDW) is one of the heaviest and most voluminous waste streams generated in the EU28 (350 Mt/year, excluding excavation waste). As part of a continuous effort towards a sustainable economy, the EC adopted in 2015 a new Circular Economy Package with measures prioritizing End of Life Building materials among others. ICEBERG aims to design, develop, demonstrate and validate advanced technologies for the production of high-purity secondary raw materials (>92%w) through 6 circular case studies (CCS) across Europe, covering circularity of wood, concrete, mixed aggregate, plasterboard, glass, polymeric insulating foams and inorganic superinsulation materials.
Our role: active involvement in one of the case studies (concrete) with local partners (Colruyt, OVAM, etc.), in close collaboration with our colleagues from the Sustainable Materials team.

Circulaire Gebouw Lidl Belgium

Client: Lidl Belgium

Lidl Belgium wants to take down one of its stores in order to maximise the valorisation of the released material flows, followed by the construction of a circular store. VITO is an important partner in the development of TOTEM (Tool to Optimise the Total Environmental impact of Materials) and the underlying MMG method (Environment-related Material Performance of Building (elements)). A TOTEM analysis was made of the plans and specifications of one of the current Lidl stores. In addition, VITO will use its expertise and experience in the field of circular building concepts, amongst other things by co-developing the design guidelines 'Change-oriented building' for the OVAM (Public Waste Agency of Flanders). Last year VITO also monitored the demolition of the Lidl store in Buggenhout and formulated improvement actions for maximum valorisation of the construction and demolition waste. During the project the demolition will be monitored with a view to maximum valorisation and key performance indicators (KPIs) for the circular store will be linked to TOTEM. In addition, VITO will help draw up an implementation plan for the circular store and calculate the avoided impact of this circular store during the concept phase.

Calls & collaborations change oriented construction

Calls 2020 circular construction: duration 2020 – 2022

Het Archelier: Interdisciplinair Circulair Architectuur Laboratorium dat architecten en bouwteams ondersteunt bij circulaire keuzes.
CIRCAT: Ontwikkeling van een circulair aanbestedingspakket voor technische installaties
CESCO XL: een nieuw circulair woonconcept
Circulair beton: naar een betonakkoord voor Vlaanderen


Open call 2019 construction: duration 2019 – 2021

Sloopwijzer: AI voor automatische materiaalherkenning in gevels van gebouwen
Windows of (Circular) Opportunity: Kunnen circulaire bouwtechnieken een gezinswoning opnieuw betaalbaar maken?


Finished projects:

Labo Leegstand: modulair bouwpakket voor tijdelijke invulling leegstaande panden

Expeditie Circulair: begeleiding van bedrijven bij het zoeken naar een circulair bedrijfsmodel
Bouwen aan een circulaire Kempen: co-creatie rond circulair bouwen in de Vlaamse bouwwereld


Other collaborations:

Samenwerking met Colruyt rond TOTEM tool: om de milieuperformantie van gebouwen en gebouwelementen in kaart te brengen en te evalueren

WoonC (Hoe kan circulair bouwen, wonen opnieuw betaalbaar maken?):