10 Green Structural Engineering Marvels

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London 'Smile' Challenges World to Build Smarter Wooden Structures

London 'Smile' Challenges World to Build Smarter Wooden Structures

What is the London Smile? Learn more about this structure at the London Design Festival built from hardwood in this HowStuffWorks Now article.

Author's Note: 10 Green Structural Engineering Marvels

We've come a long way from what modernist architect Le Corbusier called "machines for living in." Or should I say full circle? Human dwellings such as igloos, teepees and thatch-roofed bamboo huts have long used local materials and patterns suited to local environments -- the essence of sustainability.

Of course, it's possible that in a few decades the pendulum will swing back toward a more cookie-cutter approach, at which time these structures might strike our children as ludicrous, but I doubt it. After all, we still appreciate midcentury modern's attempts to soar while reviling the squat brutalism that followed. Besides, we'll probably be too busy building levees and sweating the electric bill to notice.

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