CHARM - Circular Housing Asset Renovation & Management

Project Summary

The building sector is responsible for more than 60% of resource use in Europe with more than 30 - 50% of material use taking place in the housing construction sector. The sector also generates about one third of all waste in the EU. It is because of these staggering statistics that increasing resource efficiency in the housing sector is of great importance for a sustainable society.

Main objective of project CHARM: optimise (re)use of material and natural resources

The main project objective of CHARM is to optimise (re)use of material and natural resources. Other objective is to demonstrate innovative approaches for housing renovation and asset management that prevent downcycling. The project also wants to secure adoption of these approaches within the housing organisation partners, as well as to accelerate the adoption of such approaches throughout the social housing industry.

Asset management approach

Currently, the trend is to improve recycling of building materials from demolition waste. This often leads to downcycling, reducing the use value of materials. For example, concrete from buildings being converted to form the foundations of roads. A circular economy promotes optimal reuse of building materials at at least an equivalent value, such as bricks reused as bricks. CHARM develops and implements an asset management approach that prevents downcycling of materials in renovation and construction of social rented dwellings by creating:

  • circular building strategies tested in demonstration exemplars
  • guidelines for a circular procurement strategy for social housing organisations
  • material exchange platforms to enable circular flows of materials and building components in the social rented sector

Project partners

The project output will be jointly generated by social housing organisations from 4 countries in the InterregNWE region (Belgium, France, the Netherlands, United Kingdom), in co-creation with supply chain partners and knowledge institutes. The social housing organisations and partners are: Zonnige Kempen, Paris Habitat, Stichting Woonbedrijf SWS.Hhvl and Accord Housing Association. Other partners of the project are: European Federation for Living (EFL), Kamp C and the University of Birmingham. Lead partner of project CHARM is TU Delft


The CHARM building strategies will lead to 36% of materials being prevented from downcycling, compared to the current maximum of 10%. This is equivalent to 40.000 tonnes of annual material recovery by the project partners alone. Dissemination and uptake of the results in the social rented sector in the NWE region will be achieved through the involvement of European, as well as national, innovation exchange platforms.

Project Partners

Lead partner

Organisation Address Email Website
Delft University of Technology 1 Mekelweg
Name Contact Name Email Country
Accord Housing Association Limited Carl Taylor United Kingdom
Paris Habitat Isabelle Quet-Hamon France
Housing corporation Woonbedrijf Teun van Kuijk Netherlands
Zonnige Kempen Joris van der Flaas Belgium
European Federation for Living Joost Nieuwenhuijzen Netherlands
Kamp C Marijke Aerts Belgium
University of Birmingham Halima Sacranie United Kingdom


Partners of project CHARM

Lead partner of project CHARM is Delft University of Technology. The social housing organisations involved in Interreg NWE project CHARM are: Zonnige Kempen from Belgium, Paris Habitat from France, Stichting Woonbedrijf SWS.Hhvl from the Netherlands and Accord Housing Assocation from the United Kingdom. The project is actively supported by: European Federation for Living (EFL), Kamp C and the University of Birmingham. Co-partners are l'union sociale pour l'habitat and Sustainable Housing Action Partnership (SHAP). Project CHARM is funded by Interreg NWE and financially supported by Provincie Noord-Holland.

TU Delft

Go to the website of TU Delft

Paris Habitat

Go to the website of Woonbedrijf.

Click here for some video's about the circular project of Woonbedrijf in Eindhoven (the spoken language is Dutch)

Zonnige Kempen
European Federation for Living
Kamp C

Go to the website of Kamp C.

University of Birmingham
L'Union sociale pour l'habitat

Go to the website of L'Union sociale pour l'habitat.

Sustainable Housing Action Partnership

The project output will be jointly generated by social housing organisations from 4 countries in the Interreg North-West Europe (NWE) region. Interreg NWE is a European Territorial Cooperation programme with the ambition to make the North-West Europe area a key economic player and an attractive place to work and live, with high levels of innovation, sustainability and cohesion.

CHARM addresses the challenge to create a resource efficient society, focussing on social housing. The housing organisation partners of CHARM have begun to experiment with more circular approaches towards construction and renovation. Here, you will find more information on these experiments, which we call 'demonstration exemplars'.

Accord demonstration exemplar

Have a look at the factsheet of the demonstration exemplar of Accord!

Paris Habitat demonstration exemplar

Have a look at the factsheet of the demonstration exemplar of Paris Habitat!

Woonbedrijf demonstration exemplar

Have a look at the factsheet of the demonstration exemplar of Woonbedrijf!

Woonbedrijf has made various videos about Glaskring. Glaskring is the name of their circular project. 

Zonnige Kempen demonstration exemplar

Have a look at the factsheet of the demonstration exemplar of Zonnige Kempen!

And the virtual tour through their circular renovated head quarters. 

Making the social housing sector more circular also means that we have to share the information we have and are collecting on CHARM, circularity, and interesting websites.

CHARM articles and brochures

Çetin, S., De Wolf, C. and Bocken, N., Circular Digital Built Environment: An Emerging Framework, 3 June 2021.

Çetin, S., Gruis, V. and Straub, A., Towards Circular Social Housing: An Exploration of Practices, Barriers, and Enables, 16 February 2021.

Çetin, S., Gruis, V. and Straub, A., Digitalization for a Circular Economy in the Building industry: Multiple-Case Study of Dutch Social Housing Organizations, 17 August 2022.

CorporatieGids, Woningcorporaties handvat reiken voor circulair bouwen, 22 juni 2020.

D'Architectures Magazine, Le réemploi comme stratégie de projet - bureaux de Zonnige Kempen, Juin 2020. 

DW die Wohnungswirtschaft, Bezahlbares Wohnen kontra Green Deal, November 2020.

EFL brochure Topic Group Construction in Amsterdam, September 2021. 

EFL brochure Topic Group Construction in Munich/Bad Aibling, April 2023.

Environmental Journal, Europe and UK’s first plastic-free affordable homes built, 16 August 2022.

Environment Times, Nearly plastic free affordable low carbon homes granted planning in Redditch, 5 August 2020.

Kamp C, Zonnige Kempen toont circulaire kantoren, 24 April 2020.

Haufe Wohnungswirtschaft, Green Deal: wie wird Wohnen in Europa grün und bezahlbahr?, 7 Januar 2021.

Haufe Wohnungswirtschaft,  Leben wir 2050 alle im nachhaltigen, kunststofffreien Haus?, 3 November 2020.

NewStart Magazine, UK housing provider to build plastic-free houses, 14 August 2019.

Nußholz J., Çetin S., Eberhardt L., De Wolf C., Bocken N., From circular strategies to actions: 65 European circular building cases and their decarbonisation potential, May 2023.

Renda, Wonen we in 2050 in een plastic-vrije woning?, 28 augustus 2020.

Renda, Voorbij materialen. Hoe Zonnige Kempen werkt aan duurzaamheid en circulariteit, 10 maart 2021.

Renda, Duurzaam wonen en werken. Inspirerende voorbeelden uit het Verenigd Koninkrijk en België, oktober 2022. 

RotorDB, Zonnige Kempen - interior design for a social housing company, March, 2020.

Rijksdienst voor Ondernemend Nederland (RVO), Je ziet dat circulair wonen begint te leven, 4 januari 2023.

Sacranie, H. and Çetin, S., Towards a Socially Inclusive Circular Economy: A Study of Tenant Engagement in European Social Housing Organisations, (preprint) June 2022.

Specification Online, Association claims to build plastic free houses, 15 August 2019.

Verdonck, J., Circulaire materialen lopen in kringen, behalve als ze even een rustpauze houden, 2019.

Verdonck, J., Circular materials run in cycles, unless they are on a break, 2019.

Woonbedrijf, Glaskring: circulair wonen op Strijp-S, 5 April 2019.

Woonbedrijf, Glaskring toont proces circulair bouwen van sociale huurwonigen tijdens Dutch Design Week, 17 Oktober 2019.

24Housing, Association ‘first in the UK’ to build plastic free homes, 14 August 2019

CHARM tutorial

This online tutorial consists of 3 episodes. It is build up upon the Interreg NWE funded project CHARM. The project has been running for five years (2019 - 2023). We developed the tutorial to facilitate adoption of the approaches developed by the CHARM partners to incorporate circularity in their housing development and renovation.

In the first part of the tutorial, we introduce the background of the project.

CHARM tutorial part 1

In the second part we dive deeper into the demonstration exemplars that have been developed by our social housing organisation partners.

CHARM tutorial part 2

In the third part we explain the basics of material exchange platforms for social housing organisations, distinguishing a physical and a digital variant. We employ the sustainable business model canvas (developed by Bocken et al. (2018) based on Osterwalder &Pigneur (2010) and Richardson (2008)) to structure the explanation of the approaches in the tutorial.

CHARM tutorial part 3

CHARM Project Result Summary
CHARM newsletters
CHARM factsheets
CHARMing Talks

CHARMing Talks is a initiative of Sultan Çetin-Öztürk (TU Delft). She is also the host of this webinar. Peter Hoogeweg (EFL) is co-hosting the webinar. The webinars are about 30 minutes and are handling two topics on sustainability and/or circularity in the construction sector. All webinars are being recorded and published.


CHARMing Talks #1 is about the virtually plastic-free houses of Accord and the Green Light District in Amsterdam of De Groene Grachten.

CHARMing Talks #2 is about how MetroPolder keeps cities more liveable through smart water management on paved surfaces. And Paris Habitat and the circularity measures in their renovation projects in Paris.

CHARMing Talks #3 is about Circular Maker City, a research project of Delft University of Technology. And Kamp C about their - award winning - Circular Procurement. 

CHARMing Talks #4 is about Energy & Circularity in housing renovation. Maarten Hommelberg of Flitshome - introduced by Ad Straub - told about their solution.

CHARM's YouTube Channel

See all recorded sessions of the CHARM UK Inspiration Days and our webinar CHARMing Talks on CHARM's YouTube channel.

Interesting readings on circularity

Arup, Re-thinking the life-cycle of architectural glass, 2019.

Berg, van den, P., In transitie, September 2018.

C-Creators, Handboek Circulair Renoveren Woningcorporatiebezit, 25 maart 2021

Çetin, S. en Vervoort, J., Potentiële stimulerende digitale technologieën voor circulaire installatietechniek, oktober 2021

Circle Economy, Will you be my partner? Collaborations in the circular economy, May 2020.

CorporatieGids Magazine, Woningcorporaties zijn de échte helden van de circulaire economie, juni 2021.

De wijk van morgen. Open platform voor innovatie, Circulaire materialen lopen in kringen, behalve als ze even een rustpauze houden, augustus 2019.

Deloitte, Circular goes Digital.

De wijk van morgen, Onderzoek naar opschaalbaarheid circulaire renovatie gebouwschil, 2020.

Duurzaam Bedrijfsleven, Deze woningcorporatie bouwt de eerste plasticvrije huizen, 15 augustus 2019.

Duurzaam Ondernemen, Eerste circulaire badkamer waarin 3.400 plastic flesjes zijn verwerkt, 8 juli 2019.

EFL, A new pathway towards more affordable, sustainable homes, June 2020.

EFL brochure on Circularity in the Construction Sector, March 2022

EFL, The circular ambitions and projects of housing organisation Eigen Haard, 3 February 2020.

Elsevier journals, Resources, Conservation & Recycling: X, Editor-in-Chief: Dr. Ming Xu.

Geldermans, B., Tenpierik M. en Luscuere P., Circular and Flexible Indoor Partitioning—A Design Conceptualization of Innovative Materials and Value Chains, July 2019.

HLN, Koen verkoopt zijn huis van drie jaar oud voor amper 49.500 euro (maar je moet het wel zelf ophalen), 23 februari 2020.

Housing Europe, Circular Economy: Launch of the Collaborative Community of Housing Experts. Innovative circular solutions and services for new business opportunities in the EU housing sector, 9 October 2019.

Instituut voor Vastgoed en Duurzaamheid, Oplevering eerste circulaire mutatiewoning in Uithoorn, 17 januari 2019.

Kamp C blog van Peter-Paul van den Berg, De circulaire economie - een overzicht, 28 augustus 2020. 

Lente-Akkoord, Aan de slag met circulaire woningbouw, augustus 2019.

Metabolic publications on Circular Economy in the Built Environment

NRC, Slopen? Oud beton heeft waarde, 30 maart 2020.

Pál, V., Social and Cultural Aspects of the Circular Economy
Toward Solidarity and Inclusivity, 16 June 2022.

Platform 31, Circulaire woningbouw in Nederland, februari 2020.

Renda, Een vruchtbare drie-eenheid. Circulariteit koppelen aan sociale impact, artikel van Evamarije Smit, 18 mei 2020.

Renda, Geen circulaire economie zonder duurzame energie, column van Maarten van Andel, 26 maart 2020.

Renovatie totaal, Slimme samenwerking leidt tot circulair onderhoud in Utrecht, 28 januari 2020.

Renoscripto #98, Zonnige Kempen: we mogen de afvalberg echt niet groter laten worden (p.26 - 31), oktober 2019.

TU Delft, Circulair renoveren, 12 maart 2020.

TU Delft, Circular energy-retrofitting, 12 March 2020.

TU Delft, TU Delft ontwerpt milieuvriendelijke ‘keuken voor het leven’ 14 januari 2019.

TU Delft, CIK: The Circular Kitchen, 14 January 2019.

TU Delft, The role of the architect in the circular economy, 12 March 2020.

Urban Planning, Facilitating Circular Economy in Urban Planning, Vol. 4, No. 3, 2019.

Woonbedrijf, Glaskring: circulair wonen op Strijp S, 5 april 2019.

Interesting websites

Here you will find more information on events and festivals related to the themes and goals of project CHARM.

Tour 't Centrum of Kamp C in 2023 

By offering a broad view on circular construction and by constructing the first circular building itself, Kamp C wants to get this innovative and sustainable way of building off the ground in Flanders, Belgium. The pilot project around 't Centrum provides insights into the obstacles and solutions. In this way we accelerate the much-needed circular transition in the construction sector. A tour can be booked in 2023.

DiCE Lab seminar

The seminar will take place on 21 September 2023, starting at 09h30 until 16h00. Venue: Delft Bouwkunde in Delft (the Netherlands).

Lessons Learned CHARM Project

On 29 September 2023, we are ready to present the lessons learned and other results of CHARM during the final CHARM meeting. This will take place in Paris, France.


CHARM event in Paris

Posted on

Paris Habitat was a great host on the 26th and 27th of June 2019 in Paris, France. On the first day of the meeting, all partners of Interreg project CHARM presented and discussed the project as a whole, the communication and the demonstration exemplars of the social housing organisation. The first day was followed by an Inspiration Day. Read More

CHARM Factsheet

Posted on

Want to know what CHARM is about? Download the Factsheet for an overview, hand-out or as a reminder. CHARM is working on circular asset management strategies. These strategies can be used in renovation and new build social housing projects to optimise the (re)use of materials and natural resources. Interested in more information? Go to or join us on the inspiration day, organised and hosted bij CHARM partner Paris Habitat. Join CHARM and help to make the world more circular. Read More

During the period of five years (2019 - 2023), CHARM has developed interesting demonstration exemplars. These demonstration exemplars were executed by social housing organisations Leefgoed in Belgium, GreenSquareAccord in the United Kingdom, and Paris Habitat in France. They were supported by Kamp C, University of Birmingham and TU Delft. Co-partner of CHARM is l'union sociale pour l'habitat. Project CHARM is funded by Interreg NWE and financially supported by Provincie Noord-Holland.

In these five years, things have changed. There were mergers and one of the demonstration exemplars was replaced by another one (due to external circumstances). However, the goal of our project remained: optimise the (re)use of material and natural resources. Another objective of the project is to demonstrate innovative approaches for housing renovation and asset management that prevent downcycling. And we did.

In the UK e.g., GreenSquareAccord has developed and built 12 social housing dwellings with about 85% less plastics than conventional houses. In Paris, social housing organisation Paris Habitat has built a Material Exchange Platform (MEP). This is an online platform where used materials can be traded. Also, they are renovating dwellings with used materials. And in Belgium, Leefgoed renovated their head quarters almost completely with the use of existing and used materials. These insights, knowledge and craftsmanship is now being used and applied in a renovation project of social houses.

You will find more detailed information on the results of the demonstration exemplars here soon. On 17 January 2024, lead partner of CHARM TU Delft presented the final project result summary during a webinar, hosted by project partner EFL. You can find the CHARM project result summary here. 

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