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GSBN:More TLS #38, Roofs & Foundations



Hello GSBN,

As I've spent the last week researching various article possibilities for
the upcoming Roof & Foundation issue, I have decided to undertake writing
two articles myself. I would love your collective input on both.

1) Concrete Reduction
The biggest environmental issue with our bale homes is the amount of
concrete used in most foundation systems. While the issue will be looking
at several good, low-concrete options, the reality is that most codes,
builders and owners are going to choose some "form" of concrete foundation,
especially where frost is an issue. I'd like to write about a variety of
strategies for concrete reduction. I've been doing lots of reading on fly
ash content (thanks EBNet!), which I will cover in the article. But what
solutions have you developed to reduce concrete use while still providing
code-approved foundations? Have they worked well? Are there sources you
could refer me to? Have any of you done or read studies of concrete use for
various foundations in residential construction?

2) Living Roofs
I have seen several living roofs go on bale buildings here in Ontario, and
I'm dubious about their value from an environmental point of view. Anybody
have thoughts, ideas or suggestions for a well-balanced article on living
roofs? Otherwise, my article will end up with a slightly negative tone,
based on what I've seen installed.

Thanks all!

Chris Magwood


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Chris Magwood / Camel's Back Straw Bale Construction
613-473-1718
www.strawhomes.ca