Design of Straw Bale Buildings

Design of Straw Bale Buildings: The State of the Art (2006)
Bruce King et al.
ISBN 0-9764911-1-7
Paperback 296 pages

This book gathers within its covers the collective wisdom and experience of the most senior and respected figures in the field of straw bale construction.

The enormous environmental and energy-conserving properties of straw bale construction are now well-known, and this book is the essential reference for architects, engineers, building officials, lending institutions, and anyone else interested in building with straw bales.

If you intend to design or build with straw bales, just hand this book to your design team, and they’ll have everything they need. And if your building inspector needs information, this book provides answers. While there are many lovely picture books on straw bale houses, this is the book that shows how to it right, and why.

Look Inside

Table of Contents
About the Authors
Back Cover


“Anyone considering the design and construction of a straw bale building would be wise to read this book first.” – Richard Okawa, PE, Vice President of the International Code Services, International Code Council (ICC)
“Bruce King is a pioneer for environmentally-friendly construction and has a skill for writing about engineering concepts in a way that makes them accessible to a wide audience. His previous books have become essential references, and I am sure this well-structured volume will become the standard reference for straw bale construction.” – Hugh Morris, Primary author, New Zealand Building Standards.
“Design of Straw Bale Buildings provides comprehensive, state-of-the-art guidance, including structural, moisture control, fire resistance and durability. It is a must-read book for anyone considering designing, building, assessing, or simply living in a straw bale building. Another excellent publication from Green Building Press.” – Prof. Peter Walker, Director BRE Center in Innovative Construction Materials, University of Bath UK.
“This book is in a league of its own; it is the next generation in straw building. Your banker will stop laughing when he sees the book also.” review

About Bruce King

Bruce King earned a degree in Architectural Engineering from University of Colorado, Boulder, and has worked on commercial and residential buildings throughout the world from every kind of material. San Francisco high rises to New Mexico adobes, to Scottish lime to Mongolian straw bale, every project presents challenges and opportunities to build for economic and energy efficiency, while maintaining standards of safety and comfort. King’s first book, Buildings of Earth and Straw, (1996) is a direct result of working on his first straw bale project, the Real Goods Solar Living Center in Hopland, CA, after discovering the lack of information for design professionals and lay people who wanted to work with alternative materials. His subsequent books, Making Better Concrete (2005) and Design of Straw Bale Buildings (2006) provide essential “how-to” guides for working with ecologically-friendly building materials. King is also founder of the Ecological Building Network, a non-profit committed to providing technical information on green building, and a founder of Green Building Press. He consults with clients throughout the world on building with alternative materials, has contributed to many books and publications, and gives lectures and seminars on the future of building in a post-oil world. He has produced three international conferences on alternative building materials, and, in addition, he serves as an advisor to many companies, including Serious Energy, CalStar Products, Carbon Leadership Form, Green Building Advisor, Oryzatech, California Straw Building Association and others. He lives with his wife and two children, along with assorted furred and feathered companions, in San Rafael, California.

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