Advancing Circular Construction: Case studies from the building and infrastructure sectors

These Advancing Circular Construction case studies show the immense environmental, economic and wellbeing benefits of applying circular economy principles at different stages in a range of projects.  

Approaches taken in these case studies that we consider as being best practice include:  

  • Carbon positive materials from renewable sources, which sequester more carbon than they emit 
  • Design for deconstruction allowing components to be segregated for reuse  
  • Flexible spaces designed to accommodate changing user requirements for the building 
  • Remanufacturing previously used products into an as-new item which comes with a warranty 
  • Repurposing existing building structures rather than demolishing and replacing with a new building  

Business in the Community (BITC) has more than 750 members. These include construction and infrastructure companies, property management firms, housing associations and many others in the built environment sector.

Many other members have buildings commissioned, or else their ownership or use of buildings is a highly material environmental impact. The evidence base we have curated will be used to engage new audiences of clients and constructors in the concept of the circular economy. This is to show what is possible, inspire new approaches and ultimately, to scale up the application of circular economy methods in the UK built environment.  

This case study bank is supported by The Interreg North Sea Region ProCirc project. ProCirc aims to upscale circular approaches to procurement. In turn, this takes a holistic view of procurement as being an entire process which, in the context of built environment, begins with design.  

BITC thanks all organisations that submitted case studies.

About the circular economy
BITC’s Circular Economy campaign seeks to tackle the climate emergency by making the Circular Economy a mainstream business priority.  By moving away from a take-make-dispose model of consumption, towards one that focuses on retaining value from materials for as long as possible and eliminating waste, responsible businesses can save costs, reduce carbon and become more resilient.

We call on businesses to publicly commit to embracing the Circular Economy by signing the Waste to Wealth commitment.  We support BITC members to bring this to life through practical guidance and collaborative projects aimed at creating circular value chains, focusing on resource intensive sectors including the Built Environment and Textiles.  The work is led by our Circular Economy Taskforce. It includes our Circular Office and Lifting the Lid on Waste guides.

Read more about BITC’s environment agenda.

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