The first straw bale wall panels have now been installed at Inspire Bradford Business Park in England – a £4m commercial property development. Once the installation is complete, the two structures will feature 260 prefabricated straw bale wall panels making them Europe’s largest straw bale panel constructed buildings.
In total, over 4,000 traditional straw bales have been used to form the prefabricated wall panels that have been installed. The panels have been assembled by carbon-negative building products manufacturer ModCell at its mobile facility in Dewsbury. The ModCell system works by utilising the thermal insulation qualities of straw bale and hemp to form wall and roof panels that can be quickly and efficiently installed.
The business park is being constructed on a brownfield site close to Eccleshill Community Hospital in the east of Bradford and the two straw bale panel buildings will total 2,787 sq m and will house 14 serviced offices and 14 managed workspaces. Available offices will range in size from 10 sq m to 38 sq m and the work spaces will be 64 sq m with a 34 sq m mezzanine floor.
The two buildings will be built according to the latest sustainable construction standards to achieve a BREEAM ‘excellent’ rating. Other sustainable features of the business park include a ground-source heat pump and a rainwater catchment reservoir which will supply lavatories and water for plants within the building. Photovoltaic cells in the roof will also create energy whilst wooden fittings and carpets will be made from recycled material.