Cork House made from expanded cork

In the UK, the Stirling Prize is awarded to the country’s best new building and in the shortlist is a house made from expanded cork, built by Matthew Barnett Howland (see https://www.architecture.com/awards-and-competitions-landing-page/awards/riba-regional-awards/riba-south-award-winners/2019/cork-house ). Essentially he has used high density expanded cork blocks with a profile cut into the edge to allow them to fit together without glue.

Expanded cork house interior

Originally expanded cork has been used just as an insulating material, normally hidden away inside walls, but this one of several attempts to use expanded cork as a structural material (see the Studio Bark expanded cork building which we supplied expanded cork to for example).

Expanded cork house interior

If expanded cork is to be exposed or used for structural purposes in a building, it is generally advisable to use high density or very high density expanded cork as standard density expanded cork is more brittle. The maximum size blocks available are 1000x500x300mm for standard density, 100x500x220mm for high density and 1000x500x120mm for very high density.

We also supply expanded cork blocks with a groove system to help them fit together better and we can cut them to size if required. We also provide CNC designs for either decorative or functional purposes. If you are interested in using expanded cork in a building, please contact us for more information.