These houses are built with blocks made from waste plastic

These houses are built with blocks made from waste plastic

In Bogota, 700 tons of plastic is discarded daily, with only 100 tons of that recycled. But that’s all beginning to change, thanks to the work of architect Oscar Mendez. His company, Conceptos Plásticos transforms plastic and rubber waste into a construction material, and uses it to build houses for those who need it, across Colombia.

Oscar and his colleagues Henry Cañon and Isabel Cristina started out with an aim of reducing the environmental impact of plastic by reusing it in construction. Once they were joined by Fernando Llanos (and later, Jesus Mendez) Conceptos Plásticos was born, and they’ve gone from strength to strength since. The company aims to tackle two problems: one, the growing mountain of plastic in landfills; and two, booming populations in cities across Latin America. To be honest, it’s tough to say which could have the most serious implications for the environment.

A recent report from TECHO showed that a staggering 80% of Latin America’s population now live in cities. And a report launched at the World Economic Forum in January said that around 309 million tons of plastic was manufactured in 2014. Neither of these is the sole concern of one country though; as Oscar told me himself, “Plastic is a problem everywhere, and people will always need a roof over their head.” So how do they turn a waste product into a construction material? […]

Aline Chahine
Aline is an international licensed architect currently practicing in Canada, she is the reason you are reading this right now, Aline founded the platform back in 2008 shaping the very foundation of Architecture Lab, her exemplary content curation process that defines the online magazine today.
Aline Chahine
Aline Chahine
Aline is an international licensed architect currently practicing in Canada, she is the reason you are reading this right now, Aline founded the platform back in 2008 shaping the very foundation of Architecture Lab, her exemplary content curation process that defines the online magazine today. Highlights Aline founded Architecture Lab in 2008 Lead editor of dan | dailyarchnews since 2019 Founded and Creative Director of DesignRaid Licensed architect with creative sales and marketing experience Experience As full-fledged architect, Aline's background involved a great deal of research that lead to the creation of Architecture Lab as an online database of exemplary design. Her experience snowballed into founding two architecture platforms, Architecture Lab and DesignRaid. Education Aline received USEK’s Master of Architecture in 2004 and BA in English from the University of Toronto
TITLE | Founder of Architecture Lab
About Architecture Lab Architecture Lab is a MKR.S Media brand, a website devoted to extraordinary design and aesthetics aiming to promote exceptional aesthetic values and sustainable design in all it's shapes and sizes. Learn more about us and our editorial process and feel free to contact us if you would like to see something in particular on the website, our certified experts will get back to you with the most trustworthy advice as soon as possible. Read all articles by Aline | Follow her on LinkedIn

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