Jakub Wihan
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S T R A W   P A N E L S

I N F O R M A T I O N   A N D   R E S O U R C E   C E N T R E

J e d o u s o v,  C z e c h   R e p u b l i c
Nature of project: roof extension to existing building

Client: Ekopanely CZ, s.r.o., Jedousov

Date: 2002

entry to pavilion
entry to pavilion, photography of model
east elevation
east elevation
west elevation
west elevation
floor plan
floor plan

01  staircase, 02 patio, 03 pavilion, 04 lecture room, 05 veranda, 06 porch, 07 Ladies, 08 Gentleman, 09 storage D display
cross sections 1-1

cross sections 1-1

A - Eliptical wall of recycled waste from compressed straw panels "STRAMIT" production. Pieces are 300mm wide in various legths with unevenly cut "raw straw" edge sprayed with wheat paste 'glue', layed flat next to each other like bricks. Small random openings in the wall are created by leaving gaps between each two pieces. Courses are glued together with weat paste 'glue'.
B - Roof finish - PVC transparent sheet (only above Pavilion as a skylight) - Laths - Trussed rafters at 1200mm - Pyramidal ceiling of compressed straw panels STRAMIT with a lime wash finish
C - Tyre foundation to support floor beam.
D - A timber wall plate is required on top of the straw bale wall to be constructed as follows: - 200 x 50mm cross members @ 1200mm - 200 x 50mm bottom and top members - bottom member to be fixed to light reflector of compressed straw panel STRAMIT with a lime wash finish. The top member flush with the ceiling of compressed straw panel STRAMIT with a lime wash finish fixed to the roof timber trussed rafters. Bottom, top and cross members will frame openings for single glazed windows runnig full length of the walls. Stability of a wall plate is provided by galvanized steel braces @ every 2nd window. Wall plate to be anchored to the floor construction with a galvanized steel wire hoops @ 1200mm
E - Bituminous sheets - Laths - Trussed rafters - 450mm thick straw bales on edge - Compressed straw panels STRAMIT with a limewash.
F - LOAD BEARING STRAW BALE WALL - External 60mm thick adobe plaster in 3 coats. - 450mm thick straw bales ( 350 x 450 x 1100mm) joined with hazel stakes @ 2 per bale with the stakes long enough to penetrate 2 lower courses of bales. First row of bales to be located over 350mm long hazel stubs projecting from the floor construction @ 2 per bale. - Internal 60mm thick adobe plaster in 3 coats.
G - Roof finish PVC transparent sheet (only at the edge of the slope) - Laths - Trussed rafters at 1200mm.
H - Timber floorboarding - Fireboard - Floor joists 50 x 200mm at 1200mm - 200mm thick loose straw - Compressed straw panels STRAMIT finished with a microporous mineral paint
cross section 2-2

cross section 2-2

model   model   existing building   sketch   sketch   straw panel  
       The owner of Czech company EKOPANELY CZ s.r.o. (manufacturing strawboards) thought about presenting their product by building information and resource centre out of straw. Strawboard 'Ekopanel' is a compact product based on straw and recycled paper. The board is 1.2 m wide, 6 cm thick and 1.2 to 3.2 m long

       Company's headquarters are located in Jedousov, little village near Přelouč. The old ex-communist farm was rebuilt in order to accommodate quickly expanding business. Their production line occupies former barns and newly built office is constructed exclusively in ekopanels. There isn't much space left on the property and for that reason the new information and resource centre was meant to be built on the roof of the post-soviet era single storey workers quarters. In contrast to the concrete building below, newly built centre was supposed to be made out of sustainable materials that are exclusively sourced from company's produce.

       The main feature of the design is hidden to outside world. It is a heart of the project, ellipse shaped pavilion assembled with offcuts of ekopanels used in construction like bricks. Instead of mortar, cardboard coated strawboards are glued together with wheat flower paste. 300mm wide stripes of ekopanels have random lengths and their shorter sides are randomly angled. Those 'bricks' are clad in rows, so that there are spaces left in between them - creating irregular patterns of openings. This way the wall becomes not only semi transparent, but also shines in golden colour of exposed straw due to grain cut panels. After climbing a staircase, visitors are led into the pavilion through circular entry. There is a display panel centrally placed under square skylight in the centre of the pavilion. Pavilions ceiling is simply created by large overlapping boards.

       Lecture room towards north of the pavilion as well as toilet and storage units are in loadbearing strawbales. Lecture room is lit via continuous window slots under the ceiling and by glazed doors connecting the lecture room with porch and veranda. Outdoor spaces like patio, porch and veranda are paved in white limestone gravel and confined by greenery planted in large white ceramic pots.

In cooperation with: Mirek Neumann, NEUMANN ASSOCIATES Ltd., Ontario, Canada, structural engineer