Contemporary construction techniques continuously evolve, and sometimes too fast. The new 15-storey hotel in China constructed in six days. Some people believe it’s too much too fast, and it’s not safe. As much as we move with the times our faith still remains deeply rooted in ancient building techniques. There is something to be said about the fact that temples and homes that are thousands of years old are still standing today.
Rammed Earth: The Most Ancient Building Technique on Earth
The Pearl Academy of Fashion was designed using ancient building techniques combined with green construction. In with the old and the new is the order of the day. Architect Manit Rastogi used a combination of old building techniques to create an environment that naturally sustained itself in the way of heating and cooling with the sun heating the outside of the double layered exterior walls, thereby warming the interior. And a pool on the ground floor works as a cooling system when it becomes too warm. These are simple techniques used many years ago.
The resurgence of ancient building techniques is becoming more prevalent in modern architectural plans. Al Nichols a contractor in Penticton, a town in Canada’s British Columbia, has gone back his construction roots and started using rammed earth, which is one of the most ancient construction techniques on earth. Rammed earth is widely regarded as green living at its best. Currently several homes in Penticton are made of it and the owners spend up to $1 a day on heating.
Rammed earth blocks are made from earth, lime, gravel and chalk which are put into a machine and compacted tightly. They come out in blocks, much like bricks. Rammed earth homes still stand today, and many ancient temples were made from this extremely durable, strong and non-combustible product. Naturally they much more labour-intensive to make if you don’t have the machinery, but when you do you can easily create a sustainable home that will naturally work with Mother Nature to provide what you need for next to nothing in cost. Many people are returning to ancient building techniques, not only to save themselves money, but also to give Mother Nature a break from the highly-demanding modern-day techniques that consume much more manufactured materials. Buildings in ancient times were built to last, and rammed earth is one of many ancient building techniques and materials ensuring they have.
Vida Denning is a prolific freelance writer that enjoys reading and writing on a wide variety of topics. Her recent research for safety footwear brought ancient building techniques to her attention. It’s an interesting technique that could use more marketing as a sustainable building material to use across the globe.