Completed Research Projects

The construction sector is one of the most resource-intensive economic sectors. Particularly in cities and regions of urban agglomeration, resources, which are usually gathered in rural areas, are required to produce necessary building parts. At the end of their expected life, these parts are often deposited at dumps in the form of construction waste. Natural resources and planes of rural regions are continuously consumed in this manner, and there is a lack of adequate compensation for these regions.

WIEBAUIN developed new procedures and instruments to structure the resource system of building materials between urban and rural areas in a way that generates ecological and economical advantages for the region. The basis for this research is the county Darmstadt-Dieburg with the municipality Münster (Hesse) and Otzberg as well as the city Darmstadt.

Further information

In order to achieve the Hessian climate goals, the Integrated Climate Protection Plan Hessen 2025 was adopted in March 2017. Measure V 22 contained therein explicitly aims to increase the resilience of the Hessian road traffic infrastructure. The processing of this measure takes place as a combination of a scientifically shaped basic report and an action guide for Hessen Mobil for the development of the priority program “Climate adaptation on state roads”.

In the basic report carried out last year, the dangers for the transport infrastructure managed by Hessen Mobil arising from changes in the climate variables of temperature, precipitation and wind were systematically processed.

In the follow-up report, the Department of Spatial and Infrastructure Planning developed a process for the development of individual adaptation strategies to climate change, which can be applied to the different structures in the Hessian road traffic infrastructure system.

Further information

The risk analysis of transport infrastructures with regard to climate impacts is part of a two-part project, the aim of which is to develop packages of measures for a more resilient design of the transport infrastructure managed by Hessen Mobil. The transport sector is one of the relevant fields of action in which measures are being developed as part of the integrated climate protection plan Hessen 2025 in order to deal with the currently noticeable climate changes and to achieve climate neutrality in Hessen by 2045.

The Department of Spatial and Infrastructure Planning was commissioned by Hessen Mobil to create a basis for measure V 22 “Hesse-wide risk analysis for transport infrastructure in relation to climate impacts” with an expert opinion. In the basic study, climate-critical constellations of the road infrastructure were recorded and evaluated.

Further information

Health is a topic of great importance for many citizens and the consciousness for health-impacts is increasing in our society. However, in city and traffic planning heath effects are not yet sufficiently considered. Besides that, fundamental knowledge on how to deal with the impending conflict of interests in the promotion of health with other goals such as accessibility and efficient development, is lacking.

The aim of this project is to illustrate the interdependencies between city structures, transportation systems, and health, in order to uncover health related conflicts of interests in city and traffic development. The correlations between the three topics are analyzed with a focus on air pollutants in the form of case studies of Ho Chi Minh City and Frankfurt a.M. Additionally, ideas of three international experts are concentrated and strategies for the sustainable and health-oriented transportation and city planning developed.

further information

Nowadays, industrial production facilities worldwide are largely built in industrial areas due to spatial optimization and to ensure supply and disposal services. The construction of different industrial production facilities at one location thus opens up configuration options to save resources and energy through the common use, flow management, or exchange of material flows. Materials which are considered waste in one facility can therefore be used as a production material in another facility. However, this requires specific treatment technologies.

The goal of the research project “Water-Reuse in Industrial Parks (WaReIp)” is to treat the wastewater (production, sanitary, and kitchen wastewater) of an industrial area through cascade-like ordered processing steps for the use in other production facilities. This will reduce the external requirements for drinking and ground water, the costs of water provision for facilities, and wastewater treatment.

After a systematic analysis of the qualitative and quantitative supply of wastewater as well as the demand for service water in typical production facilities (in this case with a focus on the chemical-pharmaceutic industry), new approaches to wastewater treatment are developed and existing processes are recorded within a framework of optimized material flow management, described and combined to achieve a the highest possible degree of utilization with the lowest possible resource and cost expenditures.

A pipeline network with a monitoring network are developed and a variety of evaluation systems to select the best treatment technology are tested. Additionally, the socio-technical aspects of the operating system and the transferability of the project on other industrial areas and types are assessed.

Sponsors: BMBF (FKZ 02WAV1409A)


  • TU Darmstadt – Department of Wastewater Technology
  • TU Darmstadt – TU Darmstadt Department of Material Flow Management and Resource Economics (Prof. L. Schebek)
  • TU Darmstadt research group – Work and Engineering Psychology (Prof. J. Vogt)
  • Institute for Sanitary Engineering and Waste Management of the Leibniz Universität Hannover
  • IEEM gGmbH – Institute of Environmental Engineering & Management at the Witten/Herdecke University,
  • EnviroChemie GmbH,
  • Endress+Hauser Conducta,
  • Kocks Consult GmbH

Project duration: 01.10.2016 – 30.09.2020 (48 Months)


In the research project AktVis the TU Darmstadt was working together with the Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research IGD as well as the three project communes and the regional management Darmstadt-Dieburg. Multiple approaches for the promotion of an inner development with a focus on small and medium-sized communes have emerged within the two-year project duration. Inner development must be viewed as a community task, in which the entire locality must be involved. The interaction of all measures and project is crucial in doing this. Inner development is confronted with diverse interests and conflicts, which can only be resolved collectively and cooperatively.

For three communes in South Hesse new methods for the activation of inner development potentials are developed and tested through the cooperation of politics, administration and science as well as private and economic actors. The sensitization of citizens to the necessity and benefits of inner development as well as the activization of owners is crucial in doing this. Property owners are key actors due to their power of disposition. The mutual dependency of property in public and private possession requires a communicative configuration. To do this, different instruments and methods, for example intensive public work, citizen workshops, or addressing owners, are available. Visualization is an important component during activation. It can display the respective area and its surroundings, allowing them to be experienced spatially by citizens. For example, it can specify the linguistic presentation at participative events, stimulating and focusing on the problem of land use. Decisive is that an interactive local development with its tools for active design and composing of remarks breaks up the passive observer role.

To do this, a web-based GIS (WebGIS) was developed, which allowed for a connection of on-site participation with online participation at the same time. Changes in the settlement structure with an interactive WebGIS can be conducted faster and visually more impactful than classical planning methods such as wood models or 2D plans. Digital 3D models allow for an intuitive access to the area. In planning process such virtual models and different functionalities can engage, inform, and advise citizens. The participation services are supplemented with an individual consultation service. This was an outlet to discuss infill development, revival of vacancies, repurposing of adjoining structures, and more. In these discussions owners should concretely state their ideas and wishes for a possible structural change. The goal was to collectively initiate the next steps in the process of a structural change with a focus on inner development.

Although the approaches applied in AktVis achieved generally satisfying results, it became clear that a simple expansion of participation and communication opportunities is insufficient. The intensive dialogue is the first important step and a multilevel engagement of all actors with the support of a 3D visualization can improve communication long term. However, the regulating screws for an activation of inner development potentials are also located in other areas. In order to apply strategies and to further support the goal “inside over outside,” it is necessary to make changes on the communal level, which absolutely requires the support of further political levels. Inner development must be understood as a complex management task, which, compared to tasks in the classical outer development, requires a higher planning and coordination effort.

Sponsors: BMBF (FKZ 033L188A)


  • TU Darmstadt research group – Work and Engineering Psychology (Prof. J. Vogt)
  • Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research
  • Bensheim City
  • Münster Commune
  • Otzberg Commune

Project Duration: 1.03.2017 – 28.02.2019


In large, fast-growing cities, essential infrastructure (water, wastewater, waste and energy) often cannot keep up with the growth of the city. Due to lacking capacities, electricity and water are not available consistently or in the entire area, and incurring wastewater remains untreated due to a lack of treatment capacities. Based on these circumstances, concepts are required which have a high dependability and resource efficiency, and whose infrastructure capacities can grow with, and according to, urban growth.

Over the past 11 years, the Department of Wastewater Technologies of the institute IWAR of the Technical University Darmstadt led the development of the approach Semicentral as a possible solution. This was done in close cooperation with numerous industry partners in Germany and with scientific partners in Germany and China. The joint project was funded in Germany by the BMBF, in China by MoST. Within the framework of the world horticulture exhibition in 2014, the approach was implemented in the real world: the lighthouse project is a successful implemented German-Chinese scientific and research cooperation, and was financed and built by a Chinese investor in Qingdao.

The joint project is divided in two phases and comprises the novel implementation of a semi-central resource recovery center In the fast-growing harbour city Qingdao, which has been suffering from increasing water shortages for many years. The first phase (April 2012 – March 2013) encompasses all necessary preparatory work for the implementation: the adaptation of the concept to the real-life conditions of the location as well as the guidance through the planning and approval processes. The second phase (May 2013 – December 2017) is the validation, optimization and further development of the approach.

Sponsors: BMBF (FKZ 02WCL1215 / 02WCL1266)


  • TU Darmstadt – Department of Wastewater Technology (Prof. P. Cornel, Projektleitung)
  • TU Darmstadt – Department of Wastewater Engineering
  • TU Darmstadt – Department of Design and City Planning (Prof. A. Rudolph-Cleff)
  • TU Darmstadt – Institute of Construction Technologies and Management
  • Kocks Consult GmbH,
  • Endress+Hauser Conducta,
  • Aqseptence Group, 
  • M&P Gruppe, 
  • Cosalux, 
  • Far Eastern Consulting, 
  • Gummersbach Environmental Computing Center, 
  • Gebrüder Heyl, 
  • Emscher Wassertechnik, 
  • Institute for Social-Ecological Research, Frankfurt

Project Duration 1.04.2012 – 31.12.2019


Sustainable urban inner development requires cities and communes to have extensive knowledge of the legal, planning and economic fundamentals of land development. Private investors (this includes the owners of owner-occupied real-estate) are generally only willing to consent to a project in inner development if its problems are already identified and largely resolved, so the risks of investment can be safely estimated. This the communal administrations are required to prepare inner development projects in a way that investors are willing to realize new building projects. Especially smaller cities and communes (up to 20.000 inhabitants) do not have the professional competencies to conduct such developments, and furthermore, are unable to provide the required personnel resources due to their financial capacities. Thus, their only option is to train their own personnel to take over such tasks or outsource the relevant tasks to private providers. The master’s program “urban inner development” is meant to fill this gap and meet the described needs.

Sponsors: BMBF (FKZ 16OH22038)


  • TU Darmstadt – Department II Study and Teaching, University Law Ref. Study Programs and Quality Assurance (Project management)

Project Duration: 01.10.2016 – 31.07.2020


The use of secondary raw materials, especially metals, from the construction sector is of high economic and ecological interest.

The joint project PRIGG aims to establish an information foundation for the resource recovery from the construction sector and provide action strategies for its mobilization. The investigation will be conducted in and for the region Rhein-Main, examining partners from the economy and administration. The department Industrial Material Cycles is coordinator of the group consisting of three internal TU partners and two industry partners.

Sponsors: BMBF (FKZ 033R100A)


  • TU Darmstadt Department of Material Flow Management and Resource Economics (Prof. L. Schebek – Project management)
  • TU Darmstadt – Institute of Construction Technologies and Management (Prof. Ch. Motzko)
  • Adam Opel AG
  • re2area

Project Duration: 01.04.2013 – 30.06.2016


The goal of the DFG research group “local generation of action-relevant knowledge” was to decode the patterns of generating action-relevant knowledge. The basis for these analyses were the policy fields for climate protection and climate adaptation in the cities Frankfurt, Munich and Stuttgart.

The part-project spatial planning and real estate industry analyzed land use planning activities for the development of building land for new construction projects and land use changes (land management) as well as measures for the energetic optimization of new buildings and the energetic retrofitting of existing buildings (real estate industry). In doing this, a special focus was out on the determination of which knowledge about climate change and its impacts exists at the relevant private and public actors and how it is used in the planning and decision processes for both the portfolio development (communal support programs for sanitation, real estate climate protection projects etc.) and new construction projects (urban development contracts).

Thereby knowledge orders, knowledge election and implementation processes as well as locally specific conditions of different decision processes regarding climate protection goals were analyzed on a local level. Regarding the derivation of energy policy implications in this context, it was also expedient to record locally specific efficiency criteria and calculations and delineate their impacts on the energy policies for land management and real estate industry.

Sponsors: DFG (FOR 1730)


  • TU Darmstadt – Chair: “Public Administration, Public Policy and Local Politics” (Prof. H. Heinelt – Project management)
  • TU Darmstadt – Chair: “Comparative Politics and German Government” at the Institute for Political Science (Prof. A. Benz)
  • TU Darmstadt – Chair: “Comparative Politics and European Integration” (Prof. M. Knodt)
  • TU Darmstadt – Department of Transport Planning and Traffic Engineering (Prof. M. Boltze)
  • TU Darmstadt – Department of Real Estate Management and Construction Management (Prof. A. Pfnür)
  • TU Darmstadt – Department of Design and City Planning (Prof. J. Wekel)
  • TU Dortmund – Department European planning cultures (Prof. C. Zimmermann)

Project Duration 1.1.2012 – 31.12.2014


The aim of the joint project is to develop an implementation-oriented solution for the renovation of existing supply and disposal systems with an adapted and integrated infrastructure in the settlement expansion. This goal is to be realized using a semi-central supply and disposal concept in a fast-growing city without a sewage system (but with septic tanks) step-by-step in combination with settlement expansions/new settlements (with waterborne sewage systems). Concepts previously recommended to Hanoi, which suggested decommissioning existing septic tanks and replacing them with waterborne sewage systems, are elaborate and time-consuming. This project is meant to develop cost-saving concepts and procedures which combine the existing structures with new ones.

Newly built city quarters are planned with a sewage separation system and a wastewater treatment facility adapted to size. Accordingly, newly developed areas are not meant to have septic tanks. The integrated semi-central approach thus considers a combined treatment of the sludge from existing septic tanks and the sewage of waterborne sewage systems from newer settlement areas.

Additionally, concerns of waste treatment are incorporated into the concept by integrating the treatment of urban bio-waste (from markets, restaurants etc.) in the treatment of septic tank sludge and sewage. This way further goals can be integrated in the semi-central approach, such as:

  • The extraction of fertilizers for use in the farming sector
  • Energy-self sufficient treatment plants
  • Implementation-oriented approaches and strategies for the cost-saving and compatible implementation of the overall concept

Sponsors: BMBF (FKZ 02WA0973)


  • TU Darmstadt – Chair of Wastewater Technology (Prof. C. Cornel – Project management)
  • TU Darmstadt – Department Environmental and Spatial Planning (Prof. H.-R. Böhm)
  • Passavant Roediger GmbH
  • Hanoi University of Civil Engineering (HUCE), Faculty of Environmental Engineering, Water Supply and Sanitation Division

Project Duration: 01.04.2008 – 31.12.2011


In accordance with the guarantee for municipal self-administration, communes are tasked with the provision of public services and a secure livelihood to their citizens to the best extent of their abilities. To do this, an extensive real estate portfolio is created. Included in this portfolio, which secures the services to the public, are administrative buildings, community centres or sports centres and particularly residential buildings. This type of real estate is of special social importance, as it secures a basic need for a segment of the population which is limited in securing living space in the general real estate market otherwise. Given the current precarious financial situation of the public sector, there is a significant deficit particularly in the areas of preservation, expansion and renovation of public real estate.

There is a lack of both systematic maintenance strategies of individual existing buildings as well as a sustainable portfolio strategy for the communal real estate inventory as a whole. These should be adjusted according to the impacts of demographic change, which results in a changed demand in living space characteristics in the form of either self-use residential properties or rental properties. Additionally, technical requirements such as living in energy efficient and user-friendly buildings, the use of renewable energies in buildings, technologically assisted support-systems (Ambient Assisted Living – AAL), as well as sustainable and comfortable materials and technologies have to be considered. This also requires the development of industrialized building methods in existing buildings such that the existing building substance is regenerated according to the Closed Substance Life-Cycle Resource Management Act.

The new management models stipulate a transfer of economic elements on public administration, which includes the use of strategic management and controlling instruments as well as double-entry bookkeeping. Today’s conception of an activating state and the opening of the public sector to the market necessitate an increased performance orientation and efficiency in the production of public goods. The largest part of these fixed assets are municipal properties which have to be developed efficiently according to demand. The aspect of privatization has to be considered when doing this.

This requires methods and tools for the individual strategy development, which are to be devised in this project.

PokIm designed methods and tools for the strategic management of technically high-quality, demand-, socially-, and environmentally-oriented and thus sustainable development in the high-rise sector for the real estate portfolio of public authorities (real estate such as residential properties, schools, kindergartens, sports centres, hospitals, administrative buildings, …). In doing this, concepts, products, and services which improve the quality of life of citizens by connecting new technologies with the social environment (AAL), are to be incorporated and developed.

The aim of the projects to resolve the deficits in real estate management in the public sector with special consideration of sustainable aspects and new management models.

The project seeks to develop methods and tools for the portfolio management of communal real estate via indicators which allow for a decision making of the municipality on the basis of the local situation and with consideration of regional developments. Based on the solution-oriented instruments, municipalities should be able to develop custom-fit measures for their own real estate management.

Sponsors BMBF (FKZ 16I1599)


  • TU Darmstadt – Institute of Construction and Building Materials (Prof. H. Garrecht)
  • TU Darmstadt – Institute of Construction Technologies and Management (Prof. Ch. Motzko)

Projects Duration 01.10.2009 – 30.09.2011