Aalto University shakes up construction practices at the New European Bauhaus Festival in Brussels

The exhibition Time Out! will be on show in Brussels from 9 to 13 April 2024 as part of the NEB Festival.
image of a wooden pillar from little finlandia and the text time out

The New European Bauhaus (NEB) is an initiative of the European Commission to boost sustainable development in the EU through change in culture, values and attitudes. NEB creates networks, pools resources from different funding programmes, mobilises public and private actors and involves citizens.

The New European Bauhaus Festival, which will take place in Brussels from 9-13 April 2024, will bring together professionals and citizens to discuss Europe's sustainable future — as well as inspire with new solutions. Aalto University is participating with the exhibition Time Out! Rethinking construction. The exhibition's academic curator is Matti Kuittinen, Professor of Resource Efficient Construction at Aalto University's Department of Architecture.

New European Bauhaus logo

Time out! We need to change our entire approach to construction  

Globally, half of the world's raw materials are used for construction on an annual basis. The world's population is growing, urban areas are increasing — all of this is totally unsustainable for the planet. A change of direction is urgently needed, and this is exactly what the Time Out! exhibition is all about.

The volumes of construction are so huge that even small adjustments can make big, environmentally significant changes. We need to stop and think about what materials to build with, how to give buildings the longest and most adaptable life cycle possible, and how to recycle materials at the end of their life cycle.

At the same time, we need to ask difficult questions such as: could we postpone new construction and focus on the alternate use of existing spaces and the renovation of old buildings?  

The exhibition will showcase more sustainable alternatives to concrete, new ways to add value to wood and a mini house concept based on circular economy and carbon neutrality principles.

World Circular Economy Forum logo

Time Out! Rethinking construction is part of the official NEB Fair programme. The exhibition is also an official side event of Sitra's World Circular Economy Forum WCEF2024 in Brussels the following week.  

Plenty of other Finnish events at the NEB Festival

In addition to the Time Out! exhibition, Aalto University will be part of the NEB Festival's programme of talks. Matti Kuittinen will moderate the panel discussion "Transforming our built environment: key challenges and opportunities" on Wednesday 10 April. The panel will include Ciaran Cuffe, Member of the European Parliament, Hans Sohlström, Chairman of Stora Enso and Professor Andreja Kutnar.

The festival will also see the launch of the new NEB Academy. Aalto University is a partner of the Academy, the only Finnish participant. The Academy aims to educate and re-educate construction professionals. New skills are needed as the sector moves from a linear economy based to a renewable bio-economy and circular system.

The NEB awards for promising young creators will also be presented during the festival. Finland's Circular Green Blocks project will take part in the competition. The Helsinki Region Environmental Service (HSY), Metropolia and Forum Virium Helsinki, Metropolia and Aalto University are partnering with housing associations and green growth companies to find sustainable solutions to promote sharing practices and circular economy.

NEB workshops are also organised by Finimalism, a joint project of Archinfo, Finnish Design Info and Fashion Finland, and the NEB Stewardship Lab, run by Metropolia University of Applied Sciences.

Time Out! Rethinking construction and the entire NEB Fair exhibition is open to the public:
Wed-Sat 10-13 April 2024 from 9.30 to 18.00.
Museum of Art & History
Parc du Cinquantenaire 10, Brussels, Belgium

Welcome to the opening of the Time Out! exhibition!

Archinfo is the contact point for the NEB project in Finland. Read more about the NEB Festival in Archinfo's feature story

For more information:
Enni Äijälä, Senior specialist
[email protected] 
+358 50 359 4810

Time Out! Rethinking Construction exhibition opening

Aalto University’s exhibition opening as part of the New European Bauhaus Festival in Brussels

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