While bamboo has long been used for temporary structures and scaffolding through out the developing world, new weatherproof sealing techniques have allowed the fast-growing and incredibly strong stalks to be used for permanent structures as well. Leading the way in this burgeoning eco-friendly construction sector is Ibuku, the award-winning architectural firm behind The Green School
Ibuku was founded by Elora Hardy. Raised in Bali and schooled in the California, Elora gave up a cushy NYC design job at Donna Karan to returned to the jungle of Indonesia to follow her dream of sustainable design. Currently Ibuku is in the midst of constructing Green Village, a planned community of environmentally integrated homes made entirely out of bamboo. From the structure’s load-barring exo-skeloton to the brushed floor boards to the watertight roof shingles, the versatility of bamboo is really what is on display. Located along the Ayung River valley and 30 minutes from Bali’s famed surf beaches, the Green Village hopes to show that with innovative design and new construction techniques, both luxury and sustainable can be achieved at once.
Unlike practically every other architectural firm, Ibuku doesn’t use traditional blueprints. Instead the designer built intricate scale models out of tiny pieces of whittled down bamboo. Each tiny stalk is mapped into a computer program and tested for overall structural integrity. The builders then search for a full-size stalk that matches the same curvature as the model and begin to construction the building.
Bamboo construction offers equatorial nations the ability to harness their own readily available natural resource to build lasting infrastructure.
To listen to Elora talk more about the Green Village and other sustainable initiatives you can watch her InkTalk here.