René de Lincel (PWN) wins Maacq Waar(de) competition: Bird-nest box from water-chain raw materials 

The winning product-idea in the Maacq Waar(de) competition is a bird-nest box, an idea of René de Lincel, strategic purchaser at PWN. With this competition, AquaMinerals and Omlab called on water sector workers to submit their ideas from, for and by the sector. The key features sought by the jury were innovation, feasibility and appeal. Tens of ideas were submitted from all over the country.

René de Lincel submitted several ideas, all of which had to do with nature inclusivity in buildings. For instance, a roof tile with a nesting space, a hollow brick, and bird-nest box or bat box

Market demand 
The idea responds to demands from the market. Architect for animals, Jennifer de Jonge, first envisioned it herself: ‘It’s time to “de-concrete” the nest box’. Omlab’s biologically degradable material prototype Itbettermatter does not contain a single particle of concrete or cement. It is made primarily of #calciet, #cellulose (Recell® ) and #Kaumera – all materials from water treatment. The jury chose to realise the winning idea in the form of a swallow’s nest box. An important aspect is that these birds seek out water, and that the house martin (of the swallow family) and the barn swallow are both on the Red List. Modern building surfaces are often too smooth and their surroundings far too tidy. Omlab 3-D prints a ready-made nest and designs a surrounding box, with enough room for the swallows to build themselves. After a few years, the first nest will degrade and fall to the ground. That will give the proprietor the time to make the surroundings swallow-friendly. At the end of the summer the nest box will be presented to the prize winner René de Lincel.

Making true and adding value 
Maacq Waar(de) stands for making ideas come true and adding value to the circular materials produced by the water sector. Impact through volume – besides feasibility – is a key criterium. The shared 2nd and 3rd places went to two product-ideas that the jury considered very promising. These were submitted by two Brabant Water staff members, namely:  Khymo Moestadja and Marc van Hal. The AquaMinerals business development department will be studying these ideas in the months ahead.