This article was origonally published on hemptoday.net
An Australian company has secured an exclusive distributorship in the USA for a hempcrete building system it says is cost competitive with traditional construction. Queensland-based HempBLOCK Australia also has begun marketing and selling the bio-based system, made by the French firm Vieille Matériaux, in Australia and New Zealand.
Johan Tijssen, Director at HempBLOCK operations in the USA and Australia, said the extensive research his company has undertaken confirmed conditions are right for entering the U.S. market.
“The residential construction market in the U.S. is huge,” said Tijssen, noting 416,000 single unit residential building permits were issued last year, with 90% timber framed and 10% from concrete masonry. He said HempBLOCK is targeting six key residential construction growth regions in the U.S.
For homes, small buildings
The HempBLOCK system employs post-and-beam framing of steel and concrete combined with interlocking pre-formed hempcrete blocks in a range of configurations that weigh about 40 lbs. each. The load-bearing structure is incorporated into the walling system during construction.
The system is suitable for the construction of single-family homes and small buildings up to two stories. The blocks can also be used to insulate existing buildings, providing a rating of up to R28, Tijssen said.
The company offers an in-house team of architects who help can develop basic building designs or work to advance existing plans by tailoring them to the HempBLOCK system.
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