What is achievable in terms of circular cities?
Volumes is a creative and productive hub in Paris specialized in computational design and digital fabrication. Within the Paris pilot, the hub is supporting REFLOW through a platform called Driven by Volumes, an incubation program aiming to embed advanced Computational Design strategies in Early Stage Entrepreneurship for a Circular Economy. The program offers makers, designers and entrepreneurs a full access to digital fabrication facilities but also to a community of experts in digital technologies and process plus a series of online workshops. Driven by Volumes is being prototyped within REFLOW with the following question in mind: instead of being considered as a set of boundaries, can technology serve to explore and find new, radical and unexpected solutions for human fundamental challenges?
We at Volumes have been exploring for years applications of generative design, digital fabrication, algorithmic optimization and its impact in the way we build our cities. Through different workshops, events, open lectures, we consolidated a wide network of creative professionals that use such technologies in their practices. Within our communities, projects and ideas pop-up but sometimes it is challenging for them to build a strong business models.
On the other hand, we observed a lack of connection between such creative communities and big corporations of the temporary construction sector. Driven by Volumes emerged with the idea of bridging those gaps in the sector and to support the creation of new radical solutions of business.
One of the main challenges for a transition to a circular model in our cities is to create scalable services and products with a solid and sustainable business model by intercepting the value creation in the maker communities. With Driven by Volumes we aim to trigger an awareness of how computational design can be used to consider and put to action all the principles of a circular economy. The projects we select for incubation will act as precedents within the field.
Our goal is to run different rounds of the incubation program. Each round has a 6 to 12 months span and we select from 3 to 5 projects for round. During the program we support those projects towards the definition of their concept, their business models definition and the establishment of the company. Along this process, we provide projects with:
Our long term objective is to keep Driven by Volumes alive and financially sustainable also after the end of REFLOW, so we can expand its impact beyond the 3 years of applied research.
The online workshop is scheduled for Jan. 11st to 15th and is tutored by the renowned engineering team Bollinger + Grohmann. Get ready: we plan to build the Pavillon during the summer!
Within the REFLOW Consortium, we are in particular collaborating closely with:
You can get more information on the project on our social media platforms:
Main image credits: Circular pavilion by WAO Architecture. Full credits and more info here