The students of the Master of Advanced Ecological Buildings and Bio-cities hosted in the facilities of Valldaura Labs in the municipality of Cerdanyola del Vallès, have developed throughout this academic year a prototype of a “Quarantine Cabin”, a small construction designed for self- isolation which could be considered as one of the first km0 constructions made in Catalonia. Throughout the year, students participated in the tasks of sustainable forest management that are carried out in Valldaura according to the approved Forest Plan. A mobile sawmill was then taken to the facility to produce pine wood boards then dried for sixty days. From these boards were produced lamellae of 2 cm that were pressed in 3 layers using a manual press installed at Valldaura allowing the production of Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) panels which is a technique used today for wooden housing buildings that are being constructed in Barcelona and around the world.

The panels were later assembled without using any nails nor screws nor glue (only traditional wooden joints) to set up the prototype called Voxel, which has an area of ??16 m2 and has been designed for voluntary quarantine or confinement. The façade of the volume is made of cork and the scrap cuts of the raw wood boards, maintaining their natural irregular shaped edge, that were burned using a technique inspired by the Japanese yakisugi tradition which improves the material’s durability and weather resistance.

The entire interior leaves exposed the wood of the forests of Valldaura, which has been fully traced from its place of origin, so that it is possible to know with precision from which tree and location any board of the structure comes from. The prototype was presented on September 4 at the end of the master’s program. The students developed much of the work in a corona-virus induced confinement that limited the presence of external experts, by utilizing existing machinery in Valldaura and obtaining the advice of experts online.

These prototypes powerfully promote the Circular Bioeconomy and the expansion of wood construction in Catalonia. Similarly, the Institute d’Arquitectura Avançada de Catalunya works with other entities in the country to promote the development of a CLT plant in Catalonia to promote wooden construction to combat climate change, using local resources and supporting the sustainable management of forests of Catalonia.

Design (MAEBB 2019/20 Students): Alexander Hadley, Anfisa Mishchenko, Ay?e Sena Kocao?lu, Camille Julienne Garnier McCormick, Dania Fouad Suheil, Ester Camps Bastida, Filippo Vegezzi, Giada Mirizzi, Juan Gabriel Secondo, Maitri Joy Uka, Maria Camila Fajardo Russi, Nathalie D’Angiolillo Botbol, Shreya Sharma, Yue Zhang, Zhiqian Liu, Rafael Abboud & Irene Rodriguez Perez

Project Direction: Vicente Guallart, Daniel Ibañez & Michael Salka

Green Fab Lab Management: Jordi Prat

Consultants: Oscar Aceves, Miquel Rodriguez, Jochen Scheerer, Eduardo Chamorro & David Valldeoriola

Volunteers: Akshay Sunil Mhamunkar, Daniel Joseph Nahmias, Bruno Ganem Cuotinho, Layth Sidiq, Kya Kerner & Kevin Matar

Sponsors: Saltoki, Miogás, Mausa, Distribució Sostenible, Bestiario, Henkel, Cork 2000 & Tallfusta