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Housing Europe publishes State of Housing in EU report
On 17 October, Housing Europe presented its State of Housing in the EU report in the European Parliament and at the Committee of the Regions. The report includes:
An Action Plan to decrease the stock of non-cited harmonised standards
Joint efforts by the European Commission (EC) and the European Standardization Organizations (ESOs) address the issue of increasing non-cited harmonised standards.
In the short-term (2017- early 2018), the EC and CEN and CENELEC (the European Committee for Standardization (CEN), the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization (CENELEC)) will focus on a series of candidate harmonized standards that were blocked due to administrative reasons and/or required more in-depth analysis/discussions, in view of taking the necessary steps allowing their citation in the OJEU.
The 2nd short-term action is related to the system of ‘New Approach Consultants’ (NAC) where EC and CEN and CENELEC will collaborate to have a smooth and continuous transition from the current system to the new framework of ‘HArmonized Standards Consultants’ (HAS) that the EC is installing.
Live from the European Union
Efficient and Professional Public Procurement
European Commission published an initiative to promote efficient and professional procurement.
The initiative is expected to help to carry out procurement more efficiently and in a sustainable manner, while making full use of digital technologies to simplify and accelerate procedures.
This initiative has four main strands: definition of priority areas for improvement; voluntary ex-ante assessment of large infrastructure projects; recommendation on professionalisation of public buyers and consultation on stimulating innovation through public procurement.
European Parliament’s ITRE Committee adopts draft report on Energy Performance of Building Directive
The ITRE (Industry, Research and Energy) Committee adopted the draft report prepared by MEP Bendtsen. BIBM and the European Concrete Platform welcomed the acknowledgement of thermal storage and the importance of shifting demand when it comes to the use renewable energies.
However, the draft report contains some points that are required revision and should be changed. The report untruly states that “construction with wood is good for the climate.” Furthermore, it envisages the extension of the scope to embodied energy by 2024.
Please see here the reaction paper of the European Concrete Platform sent to the Estonian Presidency.
European Parliament adopts the Carcinogens Directive
On 25 October, the plenary sitting of the European Parliament adopted the revised Carcinogens Directive. The adopted version is the result of the Trialogue negotiations (European Parliament, Commission and Council of EU).
The agreed version contains a limit value for Respirable Crystalline Silica of 0,1 mg/m3, while the scope is “Work involving exposure to respirable crystalline silica dust generated by a work process”.
Once endorsed by the Council, the new rules will be published in the EU Official Journal and will enter into force 20 days after publication. Member States will have then two years to translate the Directive into national law.
For the time being the industry will collect data between 15 January and 15 March 2018 according to the NEPSI agreement.
First meeting of the Fire Information Exchange Platform
On 16 October, the very first meeting of the new Fire Information Exchange Platform (FIEP) will be organised by the European Commission in Brussels.
25 Member States and 25 associations came to discuss key challenges for fire safety in buildings. The Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Slovakia, a pioneer of collaboration between member states on this topic, presented the conclusions of a 2016 roundtable.
Member States shared main concerns, regulatory needs and expectations from the new platform, such as the need for data on fires to better understand and address the problem. The European Commission updated participants on their work regarding fire safety of buildings and fire performance of products.
 Source : Fire Safe Europe
National Award Winner
Stormen – Norway
Architects: DRDH Architects
Location: Bodø, Norway
Directors: Daniel Rosbottom, David Howarth
Project team leader: Jillian Jones
Design team Concert Hall:Ewan Stone (project architect), Patrick Haymann (project architect Main Hall), Mayuko Kanasugi, Jacob Sjöblom, Phoung Pham, Jef Driesen
Design team Library: Richard Marks (project architect), Paolo Scianna, Victoria Jessen Pike, Cecilia Sjöholm
Competition: Matthew Phillips, Jonathon Connolly, David de la Mare, Kristin Nilsen
Area: 17500.0 sqm
Project Year: 2014
Photographs: David Grandorge
Situated above the Arctic Circle in the Norwegian city of Bodø, Stormen is a brand new cultural centre. Designed by London-based DRDH Architects and built against a backdrop of mountains and fjords, it houses a waterfront library and four performing arts venues.
DRDH and Bodø Kommune appointed Arup to provide specialist acoustic, theatre planning and technical systems design from concept to completion. The engineers also provided concept designs for the building’s mechanical, electrical and structural elements.
In 2015, the Institute of Acoustics awarded the team at Arup with the Peter Lord Award for the building's outstanding and innovative acoustic design.
Stormen was also named The AJ’s Building of the Year 2014 and has been awarded the prestigious Norwegian State Architecture Prize.
The centrepiece of the Kulturhus is the spectacular Store Sal - a 944 seat theatre and orchestral concert hall. An array of innovative technologies enables the Hall to be truly dual-purpose.
As a theatre, its large stage, full-height fly tower and variable-sized orchestra pit allow it to host complex theatrical and televised shows. When transformed to a traditional shoebox concert hall, it can deliver world-class symphonic performances in a critically acclaimed acoustic. It is a rare breed: both theatre and concert hall, without compromise to the quality of either.
Stormen also contains a smaller multi-purpose drama and recital hall, a basement jazz and rock music club and a community studio. All the venues can be used simultaneously without even a hint of sound breakthrough.
The Store Sal auditorium was designed by Arup’s theatre consultants and DRDH Architects. Unique and fully-flexible this space can seamlessly transformation from concert hall to proscenium theatre in little more than an hour.
Instead of a conventional orchestral shell, which would require significant on-stage storage space, the orchestra is enclosed by 14m high wall panels. These walls are moved easily (by one person) on an overhead track system and stored against a side stage wall. Acoustic reflectors and motorised ceiling panels can be flown or folded into place above the stage, and together with the wall panels dramatically change the acoustics and aesthetics of the space. In theatre-mode, a pair of panels hinge around to form the sides of the proscenium arch and the top is completed with a folding header panel.
The side and rear walls of the auditorium conceal a series of sliding panels that vary the acoustic character of the room. There is a moving lighting bridge which provides access to lighting positions and strong points set in the auditorium ceiling, accessed from a high level technical gallery and a forestage rigging grid. The fly tower houses a full set of motorised flying bars for scenery and lighting.
BIBM Environment Commission
CSC General Assembly
ECP TF Fire and Eurocodes
CPE TF CPR Implementation
NEPSI Training Session
BIBM Board meeting
ECP TF HEH
BIBM Wastewater Engineering
BIBM TF Eurocode 2
Level(s) pilot workshop
CPE – CPR working group
CEN workshop on Smart CE-marking
EU pave anniversary
BIBM Technical Commission
ECO-Binder General Assembly
To the Newsletter of Construction Products Europe (former CEPMC), please follow this link.
To read the Quarterly Newsletter of The Concrete Initiative, please follow this link.
List of Acronyms:
CPE - Construction Product Europe
CSC – Concrete Sustainability Council
DG GROW - Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs
ECP - European Concrete Platform
EMA – European Masonry Alliance
IPHA – International Pre-stressed Hollowcore Association
TF – Task Force