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Daily Drill: Wool Bricks, Living Walls, and China Remakes L.A.


Brazilian Construction Project unearths 900 lb Snake

Hydroelectric dam-building is a hazardous job, but this recent discovery in Brazil adds another wrinkle to workplace safety.  While blasting a cave in preparation for the Belo Monte Dam project (soon to be the fourth-largest dam in the world), Brazilian workers were stunned to discover the presence of an enormous anaconda.  I'd like to read more...but you go first.

Gigantic Chinese Developments are Redefining Downtown L.A.

China is investing heavily in Los Angeles, causing a spike in square footage rates and grandly transforming the look of an architecturally lackluster downtown. But the influx of Chinese money is raising concerns about empty investment vehicles and Chinese intentions generally. Let's take a cab downtown and have a look...

"Living Walls" on the Rise in Cityscapes Choking on Pollution

So-called "street-level toxic air" contributed to 3.7 million premature deaths in 2012. Green building is looking at mossy walls, rooftop gardens and vertical gardening to mitigate the industrial pollution that is having such a global impact on public health. Pine and Birch have been found to be very effective at capturing particulate matter, for instance. "Green envelopes" on buildings can even help with noise pollution and ambient temperatures in urban hotspots. Let's take a deep breath and check this out...

Steel and Concrete vie for Best Building Material

We've come a long way since the available building materials were either wood, adobe, or.... cave? Nowadays there is an ongoing discussion about the pros and cons of steel and concrete. Verdict: concrete construction is faster, and market pressures on the world's available steel are a concern, particularly in light of the rise of construction in Asia. Give me the details...

Wool bricks? Odd Building Materials Are Best Hope for a Sustainable Future

Concrete in construction is responsible for around 9% of global COemissions. Who knew? Well, those who DO know are working very hard to make  sustainability in concrete, and other familiar materials, a key feature in construction going forward.  Wool bricks? Show me!...


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