UP project uses bricks - made of rubber

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by By JOE MICHAELS, kgw.com

kgw.com

Posted on August 15, 2009 at 3:26 PM

Updated Friday, Nov 6 at 1:22 PM

Crews on the campus of the University of Portland were sawing and pounding their way to a new plaza by the Pilot House Wednesday -- but they weren't using even an ounce of concrete. Kyle Bunch, the President of the Associated Students of the University of Portland, says the students at the UP knew the plaza needed to be repaired. They decided to fix it in a very unique way by using rubber bricks. "I'm really happy with the way it turned out the big thing was the sustainability aspect to it," Bunch said. It turns out the little red blocks can easily take the place of traditional concrete bricks. The rubber bricks are made of 100 percent recycled tires. And that keeps CO2 emissions from concrete production out of our air. Laurie Kelley, an official with the University of Portland, said that "this is just a really small piece of a really big picture that's going on here." She says that UP students also try to compost as much as they can, and they also use a community garden. It's organic. You'll also find a car-sharing service, Zipcar, on this campus. And don't forget about the engineering building. It may soon be LEED platinum certified for energy efficiency and environmental design. But on this day, nothing seems to overshadow the new plaza paved with green. Joe Lang, another university official, said "this particular initiative is something that the students thought could be a long-lasting hallmark to their commitment to a sustainable green future."

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