Biodome Construction

Clearbuilt’s Business

Clearbuilt’s mission is to build the most sustainable biodome structures using ETFE membrane architecture. It will work closely with Tensiform who will be designing structures for Clearbuilt to construct.

What Is Membrane Architecture?

Membrane architecture refers to building structures that are composed mainly of a metal frame structure with a fabric style tent-like roof made of material that is held under tension (eg. ETFE). It has become increasingly popular over the past 30 + years as the materials used are typically light and therefore not only make architectural construction easier but also cheaper with respect to the associated required cladding.

Why Is It Attractive?

When compared to more conventional building techniques, membrane architectural structures are:

  • Usually more economical to design and manufacture
  • Typically easier to build; even in urban areas
  • A sustainable alternative, especially when large spaces are being covered
  • Allow for better signage for advertising and logos
  • In addition these structures are often eye-catching nature, making an impact for all to see.

ETFE BioDome


Various materials can be used for membrane architecture. However Clearbuilt is initially building structures with pneumatic Ethylene Tetra Flouro Ethylene (“ETFE”) pillows for Renergy Foods Canada.
ETFE is a revolutionary building material with multiple attractive characteristics, making it the material of choice when it comes to designing and building cost effective membrane architecture structures. In particular it can offer significant cost benefits for the right project. ETFE is:

  • lightweight (c.1% of the weight of glass) thereby reducing building costs for structural support materials
  • self cleaning and therefore low maintenance
  • allows 95% transmission of all light frequencies
  • highly resistant to tearing, weathering and corrosion
  • able to absorb shock loading
  • fire resistant
  • offers great insulation ability in its pillow configuration
  • longlasting with a lifespan of over 50 years
  • environmentally friendly and recyclable reducing carbon footprint


Membrane architecture is a modern, sustainable alternative for a range of small to large projects; from small urban farming projects to community aquatics centers to larger commercial development projects. With the advancements in ETFE technology, a large range of proven architectural applications present themselves:

  • Sustainable alternative for agricultural development (Nurseries & Greenhouses)
  • Glazing and thermal insulators for large commercial developments
  • Pavilions for outdoor arenas, shopping centers, and restaurants
  • Biodome roofing in its pillow form for enclosed structures

Examples of existing structures employing ETFE architectural membranes include the impressive Allianz Arena football stadium in Munich, the stunning ‘Water Cube’ in the Beijing National Aquatic Centre, built specifically for the 2008 Olympic Games, Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport and the Eden Project in Cornwall, UK, which was the first UK structure to use ETFE pillows.
Clearbuilt will initially be supplying Renergy Foods Canada with the requirements for its Biodome greenhouse urban farming facilities.


Clearbuilt Structures Canada, Inc. is a licenced Canadian private company, located in Vancouver, BC.

Further Reading:

Tags: ETFE, Membrane Architecture, Building construction, Sustainability, Green technology, Biodome greenhouse, Property development,