Latin America – Colombian Architect Builds Houses With Plastic Waste

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A Colombian architect is turning plastic waste into affordable houses in Bogota, the capital of Columbia.
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News Americas, BOGOTA, Colombia, Fri. April 20, 2018: A Colombian architect is turning plastic waste into affordable houses in Bogota, the capital of Columbia.

Every day some 750 tons of plastic waste is sent to landfills in Bogota, but Oscar Mendez thought the garbage could be put to better use. Inspired by poor people who collect plastic and other waste to make shacks, Mendez developed a new technology that turns plastic waste into bricks for construction.

The technology has been promoted in coastal areas of Colombia. More than 3,000 people will have their houses upgraded with the bricks in 2018.

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After many rounds of experimentation, Mendez and his company developed an effective way to collect plastic waste and turn it into plastic bricks. The bricks are made into different shapes so that they can be inlaid with each other, like life-size Legos. Builders only need some rebar and cement to lay the foundation and build the main structure.

“A 40-square-meter house needs six tons of plastic. Every month we produce 200 to 250 tons of plastic,” said Cristina Gamez, co-founder of Conceptos Plasticos and a colleague of Mendez.

Mendez’s novel way of disposing of plastics is not only creating less pollution, but it’s also helping to house poor Colombians. (SOURCE: CCTV)

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