Recognizing that the world’s largest cities are often the most unequal, the United Nations General Assembly designated Urban October to encourage governments and the private sector to create sustainable futures for all of those who live in urban environments around the world.
The month closes out with World Cities Day, Oct. 31, with a global event calling for countries to address the challenges of urbanization. This year’s event, held in Istanbul, Turkey, puts the focus on financing sustainable futures for city-dwellers.
Among the companies working to make urban areas sustainable and future-focused are several utilizing the 3DEXPERIENCE platform.
Piveteaubois Group, a France-based manufacturer of wood solutions for construction, landscaping and energy since 1948, is a leader when it comes to sustainable development. The company sources supplies from eco-certified forests, and invests in new technologies to get the best out of each tree and reduce the construction industry’s environmental impact.
Piveteaubois Group ensures it is using as much of each tree as possible: bark and offcuts are used to make energy and wood pellets and board is used for all solid wood products including cross-laminated timber, a sustainable multi-layered wood panel used for making large-scale walls as strong as concrete. The company mission is to build a sustainable world for future generations by using low-carbon products and production methods.
Assembly OSM constructs distinctive high-rise buildings through a technologically-advanced process of digital design, manufacturing, assembly and on-site installation, allowing delivery of custom-designed buildings in a tighter timeframe, with improved cost and scheduling, when compared to conventional building processes. This is a boon for high-density urban areas, according to CEO Andrew Staniforth, where construction can be limited to infill lots and projects can be delayed by zoning and politics.
Assembly OSM eliminates most of the concrete in its buildings, reducing the amount of carbon associated with projects. Reducing the number of trucks arriving on sites reduces emissions, and the modular aspect to the buildings allows for parts to be easily deconstructed and reused as needed, cutting back on construction waste.
Founded in 1951, Pacific Consultants uses its decades of engineering expertise to contribute to sustainable development for residents of Japan’s mountainous terrain, where landslide prevention is critical for safety. The mission, according to the company, is to consider the people who use the infrastructure and how it will impact their lives and the future. Guided by the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, the company is developing a system to absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen through its projects, and then using that to offset the CO2 emissions of developing countries.
The mission of ECCUS, a Swiss startup founded in 2020, is to transfer industrial and storage facilities to underground spaces to free up land for other uses. This is no small job. There are more than 8,000 data centers worldwide and at least 600 of these are hyperscale, taking up between 10,000 and 100,000 square feet of land. The demand for more and larger data centers is leading to pushback, with calls for land to be freed for sustainable uses.
In response, ECCUS has developed the ECO-Caverne,™ an underground storage facility that is suitable for a variety of ground conditions. The ECO-Caverne™ is not visible from ground level, does not impact characteristics of the above ground site, and is cost and energy efficient. Additionally, because the ground works as an insulator, heat inside the storage unit can be captured and used in the buildings on the surface through a thermal management system, reducing energy requirements above ground.
As global populations rise, housing shortages are a growing challenge for governments. The mission of KREOD is to transform architectural design and development with advanced technology and automation. By harnessing its digital capabilities to create self-build housing, social housing and turnkey housing developments across the United Kingdom, KREOD is finding innovative housing solutions by working to bring down cost barriers and using sustainable building methods and materials.
Smart urban planning is crucial for the world’s cities to provide bright futures for those who live there. These companies are showing, through development of new technologies and commitment to sustainability, investment in urban development can be an engine to power a sustainable urban future for all.