• IQS Green Fridays Organizes a Session on Sustainable Architecture

Monday, 26 June, 2023

Entitled “Self-Sustaining Buildings. The TO Home,” the IQS Green Fridays student group held a session on sustainable architecture. Led by the architects and participants in the project “The TO Home,” Júlia Dubois and Xavi Ruiz, the discussion centred around ecocriticism regarding sustainable housing. They also discussed the self-sustaining building project constructed by undergraduate Architecture Studies students from the Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura del Vallés (UPC) about participating in the Solar Decathlon competition.

The TO Home, now located in the Can Llima gardens at the Diagonal Besós Campus, competed in the Solar Decathlon Europe 2019 competition in Hungary, and earned two third prizes in the categories of architecture and circularity and sustainability. The TO Home is a passive house designed to make the most of natural energy resources and support the circularity of its material flows to minimize the generation of waste. The home showcases how hierarchies of conventional rooms can be shattered: there is no kitchen, bathroom, or specific room. Instead, each room adapts to the needs of the residents. Depending on the climate, the interior distribution of the space and comfort conditions are managed to minimize energy consumption. For example, residents can sleep in the northern part during the summer to be cooler and in the southern part during the winter to take advantage of the warmest part of the house. In addition, it has a photovoltaic energy production system connected to the grid that allows it to be energy self-sufficient.

Currently, The TO Home is a multifunctional space that is used for teaching, research, and raising awareness about sustainability, architecture, and construction issues. It is an example of how we can build and live sustainably and efficiently as well as a space for reflection and learning in this field.