Humans of TU Delft: Nienke Scheenaart

Nienke Scheenaart was inspired by the idea of students taking a design project all the way through to the building phase. That’s why she joined the MOR project team.

Nienke Scheenaart: "We’re competing in the Solar Decathlon Europe for 2019 and the focus is on renovation." (Photo: Heather Montague)

“During my bachelor’s I saw the Prêt-à-Loger project and have always been inspired by it. It’s this cool, super sustainable project that was completely designed and built by students. Even though this faculty teaches you how to design buildings, you never get to the step of actually building one until you are employed. That’s what really fascinated me and inspired me to get involved in the MOR (Modular Office Renovation) project. The focus is on designing a sustainable and circular building that is great for the environment because we still need this planet.

We’re competing in the Solar Decathlon Europe for 2019 and the focus is on renovation. They specifically asked teams to design something based on an old building. We took it a bit broader and went for transformation, meaning that you change the actual function of the building. We chose these old, poorly performing office buildings from the ‘70s and we are transforming them into something that gives back to their surroundings rather than taking away from it. You obviously can’t build a whole office building for the competition so we are taking the case study and building a mock-up of it.

‘20 different nationalities within the team makes it exciting’

Being a part of this really helps you gain a lot of knowledge that you won’t get in your normal courses. I find it really fun that you get to deal with so many different people. We have 20 different nationalities within the team which makes it exciting. Everyone works in a different way so we can learn a lot from each other. Most of us are from the architecture faculty, but we do have a few from EEMCS and civil engineering to help us with some technical knowledge.

I think it’s such a fun project and as students we learn so much from it. It’s really valuable for me personally, but I think it is for everyone involved. It’s so interesting to be a part of the design and then make something that becomes physically real.”

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Interested in the MOR project? Read Transforming derelict offices into sustainable homes or click on the tag below this article.

Heather Montague / Freelance writer

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