Conforta in Deurne becomes an energy-efficient district
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Conforta in Deurne becomes an energy-efficient district

The ecological facing brick Nature7 Brick B creates an urban feel

Conforta in Deurne becomes an energy-efficient district

Project

passive crèche and 7 passive homes in Deurne

Client

AG Vespa

Architect

BULK Architecten

Contractor

DCA nv

Facing bricks

Hand-Made facing bricks:
Nature7 Brick B

Processing

traditional brickwork with a slightly recessed horizontal joint    

Photos: © Sepp van Dun   

Conforta in Deurne becomes an energy-efficient district

The project lies in the middle of a block in the Conforta district and consists of a passive crèche, an underground car park and seven passive homes with a large roof terrace and four compact smaller homes.

In the middle of the block is a large oblong garden.   

Conforta in Deurne becomes an energy-efficient district

The architects were faced with the challenge of creating a block while focussing on light, air and space.

The crèche has been constructed from the street to the garden, as a sort of barcode with varying characters. The homes are located above it and benefit from a large terrace and luxurious width. 

Conforta in Deurne becomes an energy-efficient district

BULK Architecten: “A brick building was the obvious choice for a rough working-class district. Brick creates the right tone in the city: solid and warm, not too cold or too fragile.

In order to make the building passive, we chose the solid passive construction concept using thick façade elements (42 cm) with 19 cm insulation. A brick, 7 cm thick, helped to limit the thickness of the façades to some extent.”  

Conforta in Deurne becomes an energy-efficient district

Between the entrances to the homes, the façade is pushed inwards at certain intervals, creating recesses which are alternately located on the street or inside the building. The facing brick is then continued around the corner, right into the crèche itself.

Facing bricks on the inside create a warm feel and also have good acoustic properties. The windows are also set deep in the façade construction. Recesses and deep edges not only give the façade a rugged character but also help to create shade for the passive homes.

The pleasant 1:3 ratio of the Hand-Made Nature7 Brick B works fantastically well here: in quarter bond, it creates an extremely restful pattern with little cutting waste for the contractor. 

Conforta in Deurne becomes an energy-efficient district
The colour of Brick B blends in beautifully with the façades of the original homes in the Conforta district.
 
The bricks are jointed with a very slightly recessed horizontal joint. This brings the layers very slightly forwards. The grout has a brownish grey tint which blends well with Brick B itself.
 
The quarter bond chosen met with an extremely positive reaction from the contractor because there was relatively little brick waste. Every header and every 2/3rd could be used, provided that it was cut neatly.