Housing cooperative erects Spain’s tallest timber building
24 April 2019 Construction
La Borda is a self-organized cooperative founded to offer decent, safe housing, based on collective ownership. The idea was born in 2012 and promoted by the community of Barcelona, Spain.
La Borda erected a wooden residential building, consisting of 28 collectively-owned homes and a series of community spaces.
The structure of the building is made of PEFC-certified Cross Laminated Timber (CLT), a lightweight, high quality, renewable material.
Unlike conventional construction materials, such as steel or concrete that cause high-energy costs and are not renewable, timber is environmentally friendly. With its six floors, the building is the tallest building with a wooden structure in Spain.
The cooperative’s aim was to construct a building with minimal environmental impact, both in its construction and during its lifetime. Furthermore, the project shall eliminate the users’ risk of energy poverty, which some of them had suffered because of high energy costs.
The highest bioclimatic parameters have been introduced to create a building with almost zero energy consumption, and therefore very low associated costs. The patio of the building is covered with a greenhouse, which captures solar radiation in winter and has a chimney effect that forces ventilation in summer. Well insulated windows and doors allow to further save energy.
Furthermore, La Borda has a centralized system for thermal generation of hot water and air conditioning. A biomass boiler generates renewable energy without using fossil fuels. Thanks to these measures, between 500 and 800 tonnes of CO2 will be saved during the building’s lifetime of 75 years.