Make Your City (smart)!

Written by esba

Technische Universität Wien – Continuing Education Center (lead partner)
Käferhaus G.m.b.H.
Institut für Höhere Studien (IHS)
asbn – Austrian Strawbale Network
RWT plus ZT GmbH

A toolkit for self-building is going to be developed to enable building initiatives from laymen, planners and craftsmen to participate collectively in urban development and shape their built environment according to their needs and ideas. On the one hand we aim to speed up community building processes and on the other one, we intend to expand the scope for action.
In the course of a comprehensive theoretical research, an overview of self-constructed and multi-storey buildings within their broader context is compiled, refined and presented in a general manner.

The starting point is the investigation of existing self-build case studies and their transfer into multi-storey urban construction practices. Construction processes are described and supplemented by cost and effort schemes as well as ecological indicators. Collective-inclusive self-construction processes, feasibility and usability are emphasized as well as low-tech, resource cycles and
technical standards – related requirements of construction.
After this preparation, we extract and develop generic typologies and scenarios from the case studies to create a set of generalized do it yourself (DIY) patterns.
Finally, both the DIYpatterns as well as the previously acquired theoretical knowledge will be incorporated into a spectrum of four chosen typologies, which will be explained in detail and presented in graphically appealing format.
Our motivations, following the principles of salutogenesis, resilience and mutuality, are less about creating “finished” products, rather than recognizing open social design processes as the essential core in built environments.

Link to project-site (German):

About the author


The European Straw Building Association is an independent European association, devoid of any profit making motive. The object of the Association is to promote and develop the use of straw, as a sustainable way of building in all the senses of the term “sustainable”: renewable, ecological, healthy, energy and climate efficient, social and economic.
The Association is a federation composed of organisations and people particularly concerned with the use of straw in buildings.