Re: ? Bamboo in CommonHouse?
From: Rodney Elin (
Date: Sun, 27 Nov 2011 17:18:25 -0800 (PST)
On Mon   21 Nov 11 21 Nov 11 7:5953, Ruth Hirsch wrote:

I just got one wonderful note enthusiastically supporting the use of hardwood 
in the CommonHouse, thank you again  Muriel.
At the same time, I received a note from our architect indicating that they 
were having second thoughts abt hardwood, and are considering bamboo.

Bamboo anyone?  Have you used it in your CommonHouse?
If so, would you do the same again>
What do you think of it?
Has it discolored in sunlight?

This response may seem a little out of date but I finally received a response from the architect who I originally forwarded the inquiry to:

responding directly to Ruth's query, this architect said:

Bamboo-wise... Unlike wood, bamboo is not certified for quality or strength. As bamboo reaches it's full height in about a year, but requires 3-5 years to achieve full strength, the market is flooded with 'young' bamboo. While fully matured bamboo is as strong as oak, immature bamboo is very easily damaged. The lesson we learned is to request a sample of any bamboo you intend to purchase. Vigorously test the sample for hardness.

From an environmental point of view, I would recommend a locally-sourced wood floor that is FSC (forest stewardship council) certified. All bamboo flooring is sourced from China, and has significant environmental impacts that (in my opinion) outweigh the renewable quality of bamboo. Locally-sourced FSC wood may not be as interesting as bamboo, but it's probably the better environmental choice.

Eastern Village Cohousing,

many thanks,
Cantines Island
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