• Quickly and easily compare a design in terms of sustainability and circularity

  • Clear visualisations and direct insight into the improvement potential

+Circular Design Tool

Making sustainable choices is a complex process when designing a building or installation. Even at the design stage of a road, building or installation, we need to consider materials, quantities and future re-use. As a result of innovation and research, we now have a very extensive portfolio of materials at our disposal: hundreds of different options, each with their own characteristics such as lifespan and recycling potential. Clients, contractors and designers face a dilemma when making choices. To help them, Witteveen+Bos has developed the +Circular Design Tool. This tool analyses a design for a building or installation in terms of its sustainability and circularity and generates a visual presentation of the results in a material flow analysis.

+Circular Design is an easy-to-use tool that provides insight into the use of materials in design projects. A dashboard with indicators reveals how a design performs with respect to material use, circularity and environmental impact (CO2 and ECI). This insight makes it easy to compare the circularity and sustainability of various designs. In a circular-controlled design process, you can then work towards optimal results and motivate choices based on policy objectives relating to circularity.

+Circular Design Tool explained

The animation shows how the +Circular Design Tool works and illustrates the concept. We will be happy to demonstrate specific applications of the +Circular Design Tool.

Quick view of the circularity indicators of a design

The +Circular Design Tool analyses various designs in terms of circularity indicators, including:

  • Material use and the number of primary materials;
  • Material Circularity Indicator (MCI);
  • Extent of (high quality) re-use in the construction;
  • Extent of (high quality) re-use at the end of life;
  • Environmental impact (CO2 emissions and Environmental Costs Indicator) over the entire lifecycle.


At an early stage in the design process, the +Circular Design Tool provides insight into the circularity and sustainability aspects of the materials and construction method used. This helps make balanced design choices. The continuous development of the underlying databases will make the tool increasingly easy to use throughout the construction and installation industry. The tool also provides a practical interpretation of the Circular Design Principles drawn up with the Directorate-General for Public Works and Water Management (RWS) and uses the measuring method which is also embraced by platform CB’23.

What does Witteveen+Bos do for clients?

Collecting the right data is the first step in a design process which focuses on sustainable and circular design. Witteveen+Bos helps clients collect the right information and specifications of the design and has access to the latest data and most recent knowledge of materials. In a circular design process, we mainly look at how material use can create value. In this, the link between smarter use of materials and creating economic value is highlighted.

It is our mission to help clients optimise and accelerate the transition towards a circular economy

Witteveen+Bos then uses the +Circular Design Tool to help measure circularity and environmental impact during the entire design process. The results from using the +Circular Design Tool are easy to read and interactively visualised along with clarity and advice. It is our mission to help clients optimise and accelerate the transition towards a circular economy. For that reason, we will always encourage you to make circular design choices.

Witteveen+Bos provides appropriate advice from the wider Circular Building programme. We do this by performing a reuse scan, designing and engineering design variants, translating these to contract requirements, asking further questions and/or compiling a materials passport, including disassembly manual.

Witteveen+Bos medewerker Freek Kramer

Freek Kramer

PMC manager Circular and Biobased Solutions