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Bamboo: The Latest Architecture and News

Merging Bamboo & Concrete for the Emerging World

© Hannah Ahlblad
© Hannah Ahlblad

Developed by Hannah Ahlblad, a recent graduate of Wellesley College cross-registered at MIT's School of Architecture + Planning, this article explores the potential of merging bamboo and concrete, harnessing the strengths of both materials to create a sustainable, durable and affordable material for use in developing countries. Hannah’s project was created in conclusion to the semester-long emergent materials elective taught by Professor John E. Fernández, Director of MIT’s Building Technology Program.

In the rapidly developing economies of East Asia and Latin America, urban architecture often seeks to combine the local heritage with the prestige of Western contemporary form and practices. The materials used in urban areas of these growing cities follow the steel, glass, and concrete technology used elsewhere. Usually, emerging materials research looks at the structural properties and applications of materials under scientific development. Less consideration has been given to ancient building materials and their interaction with today’s engineering.

This Temporary Treetop Hotel Lets You Sleep "With the Birds"

Chinese architecture firm Penda, known for their ecologically sensitive designs, has redesigned the tent in a bold new way for the AIM "Legend Of The Tent" Competition. Their proposal, ”One With The Birds," is a flexible and sustainable structure that integrates sleeping pods into the forest canopy. Inspired by Native American Tipis, which are moveable and reusable, the structure, made from bamboo sticks latched together with rope, leaves no impact on the site nor causes any harm to the bamboo itself.

A mock-up of the project will soon be installed as a temporary hotel. According to the architects, “after the temporary hotel is deconstructed, the materials can be reused as scaffolding on a construction site or reused as another temporary hotel on a different location.”

Learn more about this remarkable structure, after the break.

Courtesy of Penda Courtesy of Penda Courtesy of Penda Courtesy of Penda + 22

Bamboo: A Viable Alternative to Steel Reinforcement?

Developing countries have the highest demand for steel-reinforced concrete, but often do not have the means to produce the steel to meet that demand. Rather than put themselves at the mercy of a global market dominated by developed countries, Singapore’s Future Cities Laboratory suggests an alternative to this manufactured rarity: bamboo. Abundant, sustainable, and extremely resilient, bamboo has potential in the future to become an ideal replacement in places where steel cannot easily be produced.

2013 Foster + Partners Prize Awarded to John Naylor

The Architectural Association and Foster + Partners have announced John Naylor of Diploma Unit 16 as the 2013 Foster + Partners Prize recipient for his project ‘Bamboo Lakou’. Presented annually, the award is presented to an AA Diploma student whose portfolio best addresses the themes of sustainability and infrastructure.

Brett Steele, Director of the Architectural Association School of Architecture, said: “John Naylor’s project demonstrates the ways in which infrastructural ideas – and architectural imagination – might today expand beyond the clichés of Modernism to become life itself, literally breathing life into communities, cities and entire countries – today and long into the future.”

Praça das Artes / Brasil Arquitetura

©  Nelson Kon ©  Nelson Kon ©  Nelson Kon ©  Nelson Kon + 37

São Paulo, Brazil

The Green Village / IBUKU

Courtesy of Suxy © Jimbawan © Agung Dwi © Rio Helmi + 32

  • Architects: IBUKU
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area: 18700.0
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year: 2010

Globe/Hedron Rooftop Farm / Conceptual Devices

Courtesy of Conceptual Devices
Courtesy of Conceptual Devices

The Globe/Hedron Rooftop Farm is a bamboo greenhouse designed to organically grow fish and vegetables on top of generic flat roofs. Designed by Conceptual Devices, the structure is optimized for aquaponic farming techniques: the fish’s water nourishes the plants and plants clean the water for the fish. Using this farming technique, the design is optimized to feed four families of four all year round. More images and designers’ description after the break.

Mud Structure / Architecture for Humanity Tehran - Rai Studio

© Mahsa Masoudi
© Mahsa Masoudi

The exploratory mud structure project, designed and built by Architecture for Humanity Tehran (Rai Studio) + Architecture Faculty of Razi University, demonstrates a strong focus on humanitarian design through sustainable and low budget construction methodologies. The workshop not only provided the students with an enriched academic experience, but the opportunity to reach out to an underdeveloped region. More images and their description after the break.

"Thicket" - Installation / Sanders Pace Architecture

© Sanders Pace Architecture
© Sanders Pace Architecture

Architect: Sanders Pace Architecture Location: Manchester, Tennessee Project Team: Brandon Pace, Michael Davis, Michael Aktalay, Larry Davis, Matthew Davis, Carah Ferry, Will Spencer, Garrett Ferry, Ashley Pace, John Sanders, Stephanie Dowdy, David Scott, Shane Elliot, Leslie Smith Project Area: 900 SF (x2 pods) Project Year: Summer 2011 Photographs: Sanders Pace Architecture

© Sanders Pace Architecture © Sanders Pace Architecture © Sanders Pace Architecture © Sanders Pace Architecture + 11

The Green School / IBUKU

Courtesy of PT Bambu Courtesy of PT Bambu Courtesy of PT Bambu Courtesy of PT Bambu + 10

  • Architects: PT Bambu
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area: 7542.0
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year: 2007

International Bamboo and Rattan Products Ideas Competition

On the occasion of the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai, INBAR and the Federation of Hong Kong Industries are organizing the International Bamboo and Rattan Products Ideas Competition to help drive green practices in cities around the world.