Bamboo Village Hawaii is engaged in various forms of industry related research that will one day lead to standardized
building practices with bamboo. Currently in Hawaii you can build temporary structur es or specially approved permanent
structures that require the signing off of an engineer and an architect, significantly increasing the costs associated with
basic building in our area. The lack of real-world examples and data is one of the major obstacles to developing building codes
for Bamboo. Current areas of on-going local research supported by Bamboo Village, using Hawaiian-grown timber bamboos include:
Our temparary treatment facility located in Orchidland was built using county grant funds and was based on a model created
by the world’s leading expert in the treatment of bamboo, Dr. Walter Leise. Using a non-toxic chemical treatment that is
spread throughout the culm via a pressurized value, we greatly reduce the incidence of deterioration from bug and fungus attacks.
All of our construction projects and experiments are being carefully monitored in this on-going process of determining
what are the best-suited methods for treating timber bamboos in Hawaii’s environment. A permanent and improved treatment
plant using this pressurized sap displacement method will be built at our Kamaili Rainforest Site and may be open for use
by the public.picture1
FIELD TESTING CONSTRUCTION EXPERIMENTS:
Hoping to demonstrate the numerous possibilities of bamboo construction, beautiful and functional, temporary and permanent
structures have been erected here on Big Island by Mr. Pelton and others. Our team periodically monitors these structures
for stability, durability and weather wear. The integrity of the materials is tested to ensure safety and to inform future
design teams of areas for improvement.
The University of Hawaii at Manoa has recently constructed a testing laboratory for bamboo and joinery systems. B.V.H.
is supplying homegrown treated bamboo and mechanical joinery systems for their tests. These tests will provide the
preliminary criteria for values needed to measure strength for engineering the bamboo structures of the future
so that an architect or engineer or the building department can evaluate an appropriate design mathematically.
Board member, Dean Johnston, is pioneering research in several overlapping areas that should aide in the international
movement toward coded building practices with bamboo. His research includes stress-testing the relative strengths of our
Hawaiian timber bamboos versus traditional building materials as well as experiments in tissue-culture propagation.
Currently, Dean is coordinating species specific research in architecture, entomology, engineering and agricultural
sciences, and was recently recognized nationally for the excellence and quality of his work in bamboo research.
The exciting news of Mr. Johnston’s preliminary tests indicate that our preferred species of treated tropical
bamboos are bug resistant and several times stronger than conventional building materials!