construction

Scientists Make Bricks With Sludge Filtered From Arsenic-Laced Water

Arsenic-contaminated water is a massive problem in the developing world. But, even when you filter it out, the toxic sludge that the process produces often gets dumped right back into the water supply. It’s tough to dream up a use for arsenic soup, but one research team finally has: They’re making bricks out of it.


The Huge Mist Cannons That Keep The Air Clean In NYC's New Tunnels

We’ve followed the $US10.8 billion East Side Access project, which will extend the Long Island Railroad from Queens to Grand Central, all year. But now that the tunnels have been blasted, new machines are arriving — and they’re just as cool as the tunnel borers.


Ice Age Fossils Are Being Unearthed By L.A.'s Subway Construction

A 19-metre deep shaft being dug for Los Angeles’s newest subway line is filled with buried treasure. The so-called Subway to the Sea is still nine miles from the beach, but excavation has already revealed some creatures from the ocean floor…the prehistoric ocean floor!


How A Mass Whale Graveyard Ended Up Beneath A Highway

Connecting Alaska to Argentina, the Pan-American Highway runs some 48,000km north to south. Construction to widen the highway briefly stopped, however, to make way for dead whales back in 2010, when workers digging through a remote stretch of the Chilean desert found a huge trove of bones millions of years old. Now, scientists think they have figured out how the extinct whales ended up on land in the first place.


New Australian School Of Architecture Is A Crazy Canyon Of Concrete And Wood

What an amazing building this turned out to be, the new Abedian School of Architecture at Bond University in Queensland, Australia. Designed by London’s CRAB studio — led by Gavin Robotham and Sir Peter Cook, whose work you might know from Archigram — the 2500sqm structure has just been completed and now faces the hard test of everyday use.


Breaking The Record For The Largest Concrete Pour In The World

New skyscrapers will do anything for attention — which is why an under-construction supertall in Los Angeles, soon to be the tallest building on the West Coast, is trying to break another record too. Starting Saturday, construction crews will pump 16,000 cubic metres of concrete onto the Wilshire Grand site, which might make it the largest continuous foundation pour in the world.


Can Sochi Get Its Sh*t Together?

By all accounts — except maybe Vladimir Putin’s — the small Russian resort town of Sochi isn’t ready for the Olympics. In fact, coverage of the preparations has taken on a downright panic-stricken tone. Can Sochi pull it out of the flames? The answer is yes — but at a steep cost.


The Concrete Blocks At This Bakery Are Made From Empty Sacks Of Flour

From afar, the walls at this Gowanus restaurant look like they’re made from grey fabric — but they’re actually made from concrete bricks poured into empty bags of flour from the resident bakery. Concrete masonry unit? More like cookie masonry unit! Sorry.


Sochi's Olympic Village Is Half-Built And Full Of Trash

Sochi’s in bad shape. With two weeks to go before the most expensive Olympic Games ever, the sleepy city on the Black Sea sort of looks like a giant garbage dump. All it needs now is a giant torch to start a giant tire fire.


Would You Live In A House Of Bricks Made From Pee And Bacteria?

To make a concrete bench, add sand, bacteria, calcium chloride and some really concentrated pee? When we first saw Peter Trimble’s sand and urea bio-furniture — the latter is a chemical most commonly found in pee — we were excited to see human urine put to yet another green use.