TAG: Building

Building with Bottles

Building with Bottles

In the 1960s, Heineken beer introduced a new bottle design that would allow the neck of one bottle to interlock with the bottom of another, making use of a recessed cavity at the bottom. This clever design enabled the bottle to be recycled and converted into a brick. The bottle became known as the WOBO, short for “The World Bottle”. The idea came from Alfred Heineken himself, and was a response to the shock of seeing the litter created by his own products, as during a vacation on the island of Curaçao, empty Heineken bottles washed ashore. To enable the… read more

Houses Built with Reclaimed Materials

storybook house

In a world of mass-marketed mayhem, it isn’t necessary to succumb to consumerism, even during residential construction. That attitude is exactly what fuels some designers who have a keen eye for practicality and a clear conceptualization of reuse. By taking original ideas of recycling and tunneling them to the advantage of others, real differences can be made in helping obtain basic needs, like housing. Ingrid Vaca Diez has found architectural genius in a plastic bottle. Or actually, in many bottles. Able to find large quantities of plastic bottles in Bolivia where she resides, the practical idea surfaced to use them… read more

Creatively Recycled

Costa Rica Hotel

Could you imagine praying in a beer bottle Buddhist temple? Or living in a two story shipping container? You might find it unbelievable but it is completely possible. In Thailand’s Sisaket province, Buddhist monks collected a million bottles to build the Wat Pa Maha Chedi Kaew Temple. The temple is built from recycled Heineken bottles and local Chang beer bottles in browns and greens. If that is not creative enough for you a three bedroom, two story home made out of old shipping containers is a perfect mobile home in Sydney. The home features two bathrooms, laundry room, kitchen and… read more

Hardcore Houses That Won’t Budge

Hardcore Houses That Won’t Budge

In some areas, prefabricated constructions can see to swallow up designs that are original. The following 3 houses have more of a fortress vibe than a lived in feel, and their die-hard structures ensure they won’t go unnoticed. The Steel House located in Lubbock, Texas was the passionate project of Robert Bruno. An architect and artist, he started work on the home in 1974. Those who worked on the development, which took decades, constructed the home more like a structural welded work of art. Though weighing well over 100 tons, the legs that steady it into the earth were intended… read more

The Resurgence of Building Basics

Nature's Own

What comes from nature can be returned to nature without harm to the environment. This is the comcept behind “living” houses, whose designs incorporate (if not consisting of completely) natural, low tech materials. Natural materials have been used in building construction since ancient times and are now part of a resurgence as sustainability becomes necessary and desirable. In fact, about half of the world’s population currently lives or works in a building constructed from earth based materials. There are numerous raw materials being used in sustainable home designs today, but we’ll focus on the main four. Those being: tree bark, adobe, rammed Earth, and straw…. read more

Building Cities Underground

Low Line Park NYC

For the longest time, the architectural rush was to build higher and higher into the sky, and though that’s still the majority of where the market is going, constructing cities, parks, shopping malls, stadiums, and other projects are beginning to look to the ground for direction. If you think about it, the prospect of creating a dwelling underground makes great sense, especially from an ecological standpoint. The ground is a natural insulator, which means heating and cooling costs can be kept to an absolute minimum. Also, anything created underground is safe from the aboveground elements and natural disasters. Of course… read more

Giant Skyscraper With Innovative Design


India seems to be the leading country when it comes to large and over-the-top skyscraper designs, and they’ve recently struck gold yet again. Smith + Gill Architects revealed their plans for Imperial Tower; a 116 story skyscraper set to take the throne as Mumbai’s largest building. The news is big, but it’s the company’s description of the building that’s caused some head-scratching among those in the industry. “The building is designed to confuse the wind….If we think of this thing as an instrument, you’re cutting grooves into the body, you can basically define the characteristics of its behavior.” Essentially, the… read more

Birds Nests For Humans?

"Spirt Nest" by Jayson Fann

When one thinks of birds nests, one usually does not think, “Hmm…I’d like to live in a giant version of that.” And yet, in the California coast in the U.S., a growing populace wakes up each morning thinking that very thought. And they’re not alone. It began with an idea, namely Californian artist Jayson Fann’s. He thought it would be keen to create “spirit nests”, as he calls them, for humans to inhabit.Obviously not as a permanent living solution, but as a getaway home or beach property. Something cozy to retire to after a long day’s work, or as a… read more

Soundscrapers Could Turn Noise Pollution into Energy

Soundscraper Concept

Noise is one thing that there’s no shortage of in urban areas, and a new design concept for skyscrapers could enable large buildings to harvest that ambient noise and convert it into clean renewable energy. One entry to the 2013 eVolo Skyscraper Competition suggests that by building Soundscrapers (buildings covered with “electro-active lashes”) near high volume areas such as freeways or railways, urban areas could produce a fair amount of energy just from the vibrations coming from the ambient noises generated there. “The soundscraper takes advantage of city noise pollution by capturing airborne sound and converting it into usable energy…. read more

Biodegradable Houses

Biodegradable Houses

Materials that are made by nature can be consumed by nature. Being as such, bio-degradation has been around since Earth’s beginnings. Yet, innovations continue to create ‘new’ biodegradable items. This is essential for items like packaging where materials are otherwise artificial and non-biodegradable. However, some people are taking it a step further, using the barest of materials to create biodegradable houses. In a way it is actually more like backtracking, only today’s biodegradable houses are built for modern lifestyles. They are often constructed using raw materials like bare tree limbs and even the Earth itself, achieving a minimalistic design. Though there are still those that incorporate a woodland feel, if not appearing altogether as a modern… read more