Monday, June 23, 2008

Bamboo Convention Center Makes its Debut

In the mountains to the east of Bogotá, there is a small picturesque village named the La Calera and the new home of Bahia a 30,000 sq ft convention center. The most recent structure created by Architects Daniel Cheyne and Jorge B Londoño and the Guadua Tech ( Richard and Camillo) Team , Bahia is privy to a spectacular view of Colombia's' Capitol City. The structure that once occupied the site and housed a popular night spot, ended its existence in an electrical fire over 10 years ago. The owner enlisted the Guadua Tech team to take the remnant's of the old structure and revamp it with a modern convention center utilizing our favorite building material Guadua Bamboo Poles and the patented joinery system developed by the Colombian Architectural team in 1998. Due to the nature of the Guadua Tech system a structure can be pre-manufactured and built on site with a smaller crew than most construction techniques much to the amazement of large construction crews.The design of Bahia incorporates a multi leveled structure encased in glass, emphasizing the bamboo poles handsomely appointed with a new generation of articulations and custom hard ware. The finishing touches include adobe columns to support the bamboo beams decorated with mosaic tiles, interior gardens and by far the best view of the of Bogotá.The Bahia site has its own chapel built out of adobe and brick designed by Daniel Cheyne, also newly constructed. In early 2008 Bogotá was inundated by the worst hail storm to date and responsible for the destruction of several edifices lacking the structural design to withstand the weight of several feet of frozen water. In this case and that of an earth quake that rocked the city a couple of weeks ago, Bahia stands unaffected, a tribute to the design, engineering staff and property owners who undertook this project using Guaudua Angustifolia bamboo poles.

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