Industry leaders call for wider use of bamboo as a building material

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Bamboo has multiple benefits, including seismic resiliency. Bamboo structures often fared better in earthquakes than buildings made from conventional construction material such as concrete.

May 23, 2016
Industry leaders call for wider use of bamboo as a building material

Photo: Cheng Kevin/Creative Commons.

Architects and construction experts released the “Pittsburgh Declaration,” calling for bamboo to become a widely used building material for the 21st Century at a recent University of Pittsburgh symposium. The declaration cited multiple benefits of bamboo including seismic resiliency after bamboo structures often fared better than buildings made from conventional construction material such as concrete in earthquakes in Nepal and Ecuador. Reconstruction in those countries is expected to include more bamboo building materials. 

The Declaration makes several recommendations to ensure bamboo is harnessed more effectively and becomes a viable building material. A key issue is the development of international standards. Bamboo's use in modern structures has been hampered by a lack of formal standards and codes.

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