Dutch Windwheel: innovators join forces to develop 'the building of the future'

Plans to build a futuristic integrated wind turbine, hotel and tourist attraction in Rotterdam have taken a step forward after 11 companies from the worlds of construction, sustainable design, research, innovation and energy reached an agreement to develop the project.

The Dutch Windwheel is envisioned as a 174m (571ft) structure comprised of two giant rings leaning against each other. The outer ring would house 40 pods on moving rails, providing views of the surrounding area, while the smaller inner ring would house a seven-storey 160 bedroom hotel, a panoramic restaurant, a viewing gallery and apartments.

Energy for the building would be generated by a giant bladeless turbine spanning the centre of the smaller ring.

The project is the creation of a Rotterdam-based consortium made up of architects DoepelStrijkers, sustainable development company BLOC and attraction developer Meysters – collectively known as the Dutch Windwheel Corporation (DWC).

The Netherlands is famous for harnessing its wind power, and the Dutch Windwheel is being used as a showcase for the country’s transition to “a clean, digital economy.”

The DWC has partnered with 10 other companies to develop the project. The consortium officially signed an agreement on 14 January to work together to develop and scale technological and technical innovations that can be used on the Dutch Windwheel and other sustainable projects.

Public bodies have been invited to collaborate with the consortium on a roadmap for the scheme throughout Q1 2016.

There will be a particular focus on developing the building’s water systems and local energy production, including the utilisation of solar and residual heat, heat exchange and electrostatic wind technology – which harnesses the movement of charged water droplets in the wind to generate energy.

“This agreement brings the project a step closer to reality,” DWC member Lennart Graaf told CLAD in an exclusive interview. “It is the first, crucial step on a journey leading to the physical development of the project which should take place next year. By developing an innovation programme the windwheel will only get better after it has been built.”

According to the DWC, the development would draw around 1.5 million visitors annually and would be profitable within a decade, though final costs have not been revealed. The attraction portion of the development includes an immersive 3D cinema/coaster taking visitors on a journey through the history of Dutch water management.

Graaff revealed that the concept – which is designed to be easily disassembled and reassembled and can be installed on land or sea – has attracted interest from developers in Dubai, New York and Los Angeles.

“While we are developing this project for Rotterdam and the Netherlands, these are important principles we can market around the world,” he said. “Our aim is to create the building of the future.”

The full list of companies developing the innovation programme:

- AM: A sustainable housing development company

- Royal BAM Group: A European construction group

- Deltares: An independent institute for applied research in the field of water and subsurface

- Dura Vermeer: A construction, infrastructure, engineering and services company

- The Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands

- Eneco: A sustainable energy company

- InnovationQuarter: The regional economic development agency for the South Holland province

- Mammoet: A construction efficiency consultant

- SPIE: A UK-based firm researching and engineering applications of optics and photonics

- The Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research)

- The Dutch Windwheel Corporation

Dutch Windwheel  architecture  design  sustainability  wind energy  solar  DWC  Rotterdam 
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Plans to build a futuristic integrated wind turbine, hotel and tourist attraction in Rotterdam have taken a step forward after 11 companies from the worlds of construction, sustainable design, research, innovation and energy reached an agreement to develop the project. The Dutch Windwheel is envisioned as a 174m (571ft) structure comprised of two giant rings leaning against each other. The outer ring would house 40 pods on moving rails, providing
The project will be the world's first wind turbine, hotel and tourist attraction hybrid / Dutch Windwheel Corporation
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