Student contribution to the Protestant Church Congress | Villa Stroh | elective subject

The Master's Degree programme in Architecture at the Stuttgart University of Applied Sciences devoted its elective "Building with Natural Materials" to constructing buildings from high-density straw bales.

The occasion for this was the Protestant Church Congress held in June 2015, whose center for children was located in the Stadtgarten and thus directly in front of the university. As a contribution to this, the HFT Stuttgart, in cooperation with the DEKT, planned the "Villa Stroh", a storytelling room for up to 80 children as well as an adjacent room of silence. Within a few days, 30 students erected and then dismantled the two buildings as a straw bale structure.

As a first step, the students, under the supervision of Prof. Andreas Löffler, Janina Jenny May, Albert Stöcker and Reiner Zoller, examined the material and its properties. In addition to the examination in the test laboratory, sample constructions were also set up for this purpose in the courtyard of the HFT Stuttgart.

In the following semester, the team transferred the acquired knowledge to the concrete building task and in a design workshop, the students developed innovative ideas for dealing with straw. The result is a sophisticated building design that documents the topic of sustainability in a particularly impressive way. It thus makes a direct contribution to the Kirchentag motto "So that we may become wise".

Carpenter Hubert Heinrichs assisted the students with the structural implementation, while the Knödler-Decker Foundation and the company müllerblaustein HolzBauWerke supported the project. A farmer from the region donated the straw.

The project was supervised by Prof. Andreas Löffler.