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Re: GSBN:Largest strawbale buildings?

Hi all,
I'm working with a steel manufacturer in China, ArcelorMittal (an
Indian company), who is interested in developing a straw-bale wrap,
steel frame school in Qinghai province. Because the building they are
interested in building is fairly large, 3-4 stores building of about
2400 sqm (that's 25,833 sf for you 'murricans), the development
officer would like photos of and statistics about other large
strawbale buildings.
Thanks in advance,


Hey Kelly & GSBN - We were part of designing and building a large
charter school campus with a concrete/timber post-and-beam frame and
straw-bale infill here in the Phoenix-metro (Arizona) area...  It was
for Foothills Academy, in Scottsdale, Arizona, and was three
buildings totaling 22,000 s.f.  It was included in the
recently-much-discussed straw-bale book Gernot Minke published.

Here are the specifics in your requested format...

Location:  Scottsdale, Arizona (near Phoenix, Arizona)
(Use:) College preparatory high-school
Size: 22,000 s.f. total (over three buildings, the largest of which
was about 10,000 s.f.)
Number of storys: One
Year completed: 2002
Owner:  Foothills Academy College Preparatory Charter School
Designer: Weddle+Gilmore (Architect); Sol Source Architecture (us as
the straw-bale/enviro. technical consultant)
Builder:  Homes & Son Construction (General Contractors); Three
Rivers EcoBuilders (us as the straw-bale sub-contractor)
Structural Approach: Cast-in-place concrete columns, wood glu-lam
beams, wood framed roofs, straw-bale infill with three-coat
cementitious stucco finish.  All steel-stud interior walls.  It had a
full-blown fire-sprinkler system, and fire-alarm system, and passed
stringent requirements for institutional/school occupancy in the
building code.
Cost: $2.2 million ($100/s.f.... right on budget),
(Schedule:) constructed in total of 10 months (much to Homes & Sons credit!)
Energy Efficiency: no monitoring being done, only utility bills which
I don't have readily available.
Web site: <a  target="_blank" href="http://www.ssiarch.com/PROJECTS/200102_FOOTHILLScampus.html";>http://www.ssiarch.com/PROJECTS/200102_FOOTHILLScampus.html</a>
(note that the above data is correct, and differs slightly from that
on this web page)

Kelly, hope that helps.  Best wishes for your big s-b project.  They
have a much different project "arc" than the smaller buildings we do
more regularly, and definitely pose a unique set of challenges to
alternative building techniques.  We learned a great deal helping to
design and build this project, and had a lot of fun doing it... (I
thought I was going to pass out when the general contractor told us
we had 4-1/2 weeks to put in the nearly 2000 straw-bales estimated
for the building!!  But we did it, and learned a lot about the "bale"
and about each other, and about working in the "mainstream".)

Best to everyone,
Tom Hahn
Sol Source Architecture; President/Principal Architect
Woolsey Studio,Inc.; Senior Architect

The Woolsey:Hahn Collaborative
"Engaging Architecture... Naturally Evolved..."

1340 East 8th Street
Suite 101
Tempe, AZ 85281
ph 480.945.3440 x108
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