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News 13 may 2019



Author: Paul van Doorn, Senior Planning developer Giesbers Ontwikkelen en Bouwen

It is time for all people to realise that the Earth is a closed system; when resources are gone, they are really gone. Luckily, there are renewable materials, such as timber, but of all natural resources, the majority by far is available in limited quantities only (finite). Examples are oil, aluminium and coal. And because they are becoming ever scarcer, their prices continue to go up, as does their value.


To ensure that materials continue to be available, they need to be documented. This provides them with an identity, a —material— passport, and eliminates waste. As a partner of Madaster, we are able to implement this in practice. All our products are calculated in BIM, the connection with a material passport is easy to make and, thus, we are able to create future value for our customers.


The first step, from the transition agenda for construction (‘transitieagenda-Bouw’) towards a circular society by 2050 (‘Nederland Circulair in 2050’), is that of introducing a material passport. However, this particularly also requires awareness. What will need to happen, what will we be facing? And how does that work, a material passport? Reason for us to organise a Madaster workshop, involving customers from three types of organisations: : BPD (property developers), Bouwinvest (real estate investors) and housing association WonenBreburg. They were also joined by GiesbersRotterdam and our associate company and customer Kalliste Woningbouwontwikkeling.


The workshop proved to deliver many new insights, led by Marijn Emanuel, product owner Madaster, and Rob Oomen, Partnership Manager Madaster. Together with the abovementioned customers and our engineering partners Croes Bouwtechnisch Ingenieursbureau and Bosch & van Oers Bouwkundigen, we discussed how the material passport provides insight into the types and amounts of materials used within a building, on the basis of three pilot projects. In addition, such a passport contains information about the quality and location of the materials, as well as the financial and circular value of the real estate concerned. This makes it easier to reuse materials, minimise waste and, thus, save on costs.

By the end of the educational workshop, all participants were enthusiastic. Moreover, to further illustrate the material passport, we were able to hand over a concept passport to WonenBreburg for 22 BENG rental homes on the Hendrik van Tulderstraat in Tilburg, and to BPD and Bouwinvest for their project. What a nice way of rounding off the day! 


A material passport, thus, provides our customers with more insight into the financial value of their real estate, which will increase once the materials registered in the passport are valuated. A material passport could be considered a mine of valuable materials, while previously a building would only be seen as something that costs money to demolish. In this way, Madaster will also be a business model, as it shows property owners the value of the materials used. These data may later lead to improved conditions for financing, lower costs and new or other choices for which types of materials to use. At some point in the future, a material passport may provide property owners with a discount on their mortgage. The size of such a discount would depend on the value of the materials incorporated in the individual properties. This would make circularity financially viable, and turn a building’s last phase into another first phase.

The above demonstrates how much we value our Madaster partnership, and how we wish to implement it, in both the short and the long term—which ultimately will also serve the ecosystem. The first steps have been taken. The workshop and the resulting insights from the three pilot projects are the starting point for the further organisation of our Madaster environment.

In a subsequent step, we plan to discuss with Madaster, together with our BIM and chain partners, how the material passport could be developed further to the benefit of circularity.

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