It’s quite easy to put together a Lego house. We all have done it during our wonder years. But would you live in one? No, the house isn’t made from the familiar red-yellow colored Lego bricks but the inspiration comes from there. Eco-houses may soon be the norm rather than the exception. Construction is equated with the airlines industry in its insalubrious impact on the environment. Building eco-houses is an attempt to negate that. The industry has seen a lot of innovation in designing houses made from recyclable materials which are easy to put together.
The latest such comes from a German company that’s based on a modular design; easy to assemble and structurally very sound. The modular blocks are lightweight single units made from naturally cut timber, local Black Forest pine and insulation materials including wood chips, clay, mussel shells and pea shingle gravel. Each block doesn’t weigh more than 25 KG and can be slotted into place very much like Lego bricks. The slotting mechanism involves plates using dovetail joints. The company behind the technology is HIB. There tagline reads – Building with nature.
As the company says on its website –
By the use of a tongue and groove system they are locked into position row by row and very quickly a perfectly straight surface is achieved which can then be finished in timber, plaster or any surface you choose.
The simple Lego like design and the use of lightweight materials obviates the need for heavy construction equipment and labor. Another hurrah for reduced carbon footprint.
The materials and the modular tacking bring another advantage – it also makes the building (even a three storey one) earthquake and storm proof. The building can be further finished using plaster, wood, brick or metal finishes. A concrete floor gives further protection and stability. HIB says that the insulation used achieves energy-efficiency levels 40 percent higher than those attained using standard insulation materials.
HIB provides flexibility in the form of prefabricated designs. HIB also has a pre-planned system whereby components are cut to size and numbered in the factory prior to delivery. The customers just need to lock them together Lego-like. An easy process of self build options saves money for the consumers too.
Eco-minded consumers can check out the technology and the company on its website.