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Neighborhood Block: Housing as a Service in Leeuwarden: How can you as a housing corporation solve the increasing shortage of sufficient affordable, sustainable and quality new housing?

The social housing company WoonFriesland sees the solution in the “Buurblok” concept. Buurblok is a development by Bouwgroep Dijkstra Draisma (BGDD) and Wocozon. It consists of a dry stacking system (DSS) from Bouwgroep Dijkstra Draisma and the energy concept from Wocozon that comes together in Buurblok: living as a service. This service includes: living, energy, transport and maintenance. A perfect solution for both the housing corporation and the tenant.

Leasing sustainable new-build homes for housing corporations

Housing corporations no longer purchase the houses themselves but lease them via Buurblok,. The housing corporations/landlords save time, energy and money through Buurblok and can therefore offer extra affordable, circular and comfortable homes to their tenants. This is desperately needed to solve the large housing shortage in the Netherlands.

Sigrid Hoekstra, managing director of WoonFriesland, says: “The advantage of the Buurblok lease construction is that we can keep extra financial resources free and we can reserve them for the major challenge that lies ahead in the existing built environment and new housing developments.”

The innovative idea and future-proof nature of the concept suits the social rental company. “WoonFriesland is an innovative and progressive organization. We are not afraid to take on new challenges, if it means making our housing stock and thus the world more sustainable, without losing quality,” Hoekstra said.

The Solution

Neighborhood Block is also called “living as a service. What can you expect in this complete service?

  • Energy-producing homes from the factory
  • A sustainable installation concept
  • Mobility solutions (charging points for part concepts for electric cars, scooters or bicycles for residents)
  • Full maintenance (both planned and corrective) and management

Prefabricated homes

The production of these sustainable and demountable prefab houses is fully industrialised and takes place in the factory in Dokkum, The Netherlands. Using the Dry Stacking System (DSS), Dijkstra Draisma supplies these energy-producing homes. Designing is done digitally and the robot does the rest.

In recent months, the first factory-produced Buurblok homes with energy consumption at passive house level were realized in Friesland. These 10 gasless homes are equipped with a total of 30 Triple Solar PVT heat pump panels as a silent and efficient source for 2 x 12 kW NIBE water/water heat pumps that are centrally located in a small outbuilding. A water/water heat pump produces little noise by itself, but the shack is also soundproofed. For hot tap water, a boiler tank has been set up in the houses, which is partially heated by the circulation pipe, aided by the electric element. The technical installation is provided by Damstra.

So only a part of the roof is needed to meet the heat demand – the rest of the roof is covered with the 120 common PV solarpanels. When the sun shines, they provide electricity for the heat pump. When the heat pump is not running, but the sun is shining, the electricity generated goes to two electric cars that are part of the Neighborhood Block concept. They are shared cars, for the joint use of the ten households.

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