Molecules 10,000 times narrower than the width of a human hair could hold the key to making possible wooden skyscrapers and more energy-efficient paper production, according to research published today in the journal Nature Communications. The study, led by a father and son team at the Universities of Warwick and Cambridge, solves a long-standing mystery of how key sugars in cells bind to form strong, indigestible materials. — University of Cambridge
"But just as this could improve how easily materials can be broken down, the discovery may also help them create stronger materials, he says. There are already plans to build houses in the UK more sustainably using wood, and Paul Dupree is involved in the Centre for Natural Material Innovation at...
After a large solar array, Boulder Solar 1, came online on Dec. 12, the city was able to buy enough carbon-free electricity to power its 140 buildings, streetlights and other facilities. [...]
The renewables, plus energy efficiency savings, are estimated to save the city roughly $5 million per year [...]
The Vegas city council, after threatening to leave the grid entirely in 2015, struck a deal with NV Energy that would help the city get to 100% renewable. — qz.com
The six planned factories will use British light gauge steel framing to produce panelised components for residential developments that are “at least 75% off-grid” thanks to solar power and energy efficient design, renewables developer Welink said in announcing the joint venture today (19 December). [...]
The UK government greeted the news enthusiastically, as it tries to lure innovative entrants to the UK housing market to help it deliver its objective of 1 million new homes by 2020. — globalconstructionreview.com
With all the drone construction videos of the new Apple Campus 2 (AC2) circulating on the interwebs, it's easy to lose track of what the progress has been on this Foster-designed Goliath of a project just in recent months.Luckily this latest 4K video by Matthew Roberts on YouTube provides a handy...
The hottest Airbnb deals are—surprise!—a little bit out of the way.
The home-and-room rental platform has revealed the top 17 neighborhoods whose bookings grew the most this year, based on 140 million arrivals at 3 million homes. Peppered throughout are terms like “off the usual tourist path” or “a tranquil outpost” and “though detached from city proper.” [...]
While smaller than many of Airbnb’s major markets, these neighborhoods could be in for even more growth in 2017. — qz.com
French website Mac Generation has obtained photos of newly completed portions of the Apple Campus 2 as designed by Foster + Partners. The exterior, which in renderings possessed a certain monolithic frisbee quality, is far more vivid in real life. Here are photos of both the interior and exterior...
What better way to teach high school-age students how to tackle the problems of urban planning than with Legos? This was the thought of the Urban Land Institute, which according to this article in Metro News put on a workshop for an 11th grade class in Toronto to help them plan a city that, while...
In a robot-proof education, we have to focus on what humans do that robots cannot do: think creatively, work with others, think about ethics. For instance, suppose a scenario where a self-driving car can either hit three people and hurt the passengers, or save the passengers but hit 10 people. What is it going to do? Who’s going to program that? Who’s going to decide? You. — Northeastern President Joseph E. Aoun
The tiny house is just one example of the lengths to which people will go to create a sense of home even when they lack the means for it. It’s just one symptom of a much wider and intensifying search for belonging, which makes home as important to politics as the idea of class or rights – especially now, when so many people feel displaced, both literally and figuratively, by life in innovation-driven, high-tech, networked capitalism. — Aeon
China's once-celebrated Traffic Elevated Bus (TEB) has been left abandoned in the middle of a Hebei city road, not having moved once in over two months. Originally touted as the futuristic solution to urban traffic jams, the "straddling bus" is currently causing them.
A local reporter recently checked up on "the future of public transportation" at its testing site in Qinhuangdao, only to find it forgotten in a rusted garage, covered in dust. — shanghaiist.com
"To test its invention, the company actually leased part of a city road in Qinhuangdao. Since the bus now remains exactly where it was abandoned , it continues to block three lanes of traffic, annoying residents to no end."The 'road-straddling bus' previously in the Archinect news: Public transit...
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