After 25 years in the tropics, I’m back again in the Netherlands. We decided that for the formation and education of our kids (12, 10 & 10), it would be better form them to grow up and go to school here.
We’re living in a small village called “Oegstgeest” which is right north of the beautiful and historic city of Leiden, also a university town. Close to the beach, lakes and “green heart” of the Netherlands.
This doesn’t mean our project is slowing down. On the contrary, being in the Netherlands I now have access to a very advanced engineering, design and manufacturing base that will help us design and create the low-impact housing we plan for our project.
We’re currently looking into prefab bridges to improve access to the property and building sites and the design of a concept cabins laminated wood construction on a small concrete base.
The design above shows a very low footprint on the ground that will not only minimize the impact we make on the natural surroundings but also make it very practical to build on our hill-side locations.
We’ve designed to go for (laminated) wood for the structural parts as it represents the lowest cost of ownership, ecological(energy) footprint and gives more design freedom.
The single truss bridge design above serves as a sample for what we’re looking for to create access to our project sites. Spans will be between 6 and 10 meters and the maximum load permitted will be 5 tons.
Below a few pictures of streams we need to cross.
Bridges are more expensive than other solutions like culverts. However, they eliminate the risk of blockage (of the tubes) during the rainy season which could jeopardize the entire structure as is illustrated below. Culverts also require a lot of material to build headwalls and wingwalls to protect the upstream side of the construction. And, you can’t take re-use them at another location.
On the other hand, a wide steel arch formed culvert like below right might also be an affordable and practical solution.
So, more exciting things to come. Stay tuned.