Tag Archives: biobridge

Meghalaya’s Bio-Bridges: Sustainable, resilient architecture

By Rady Ananda

Known as the wettest place on Earth, the eastern area of Meghalaya (a state in Northern India) sees 50 feet (over 15 m) of rain each year, flooding all the rivers. Steep vertical canyons mark the land, some over 3,500 feet deep.  For the past 500 years, this matriculture has dealt with monsoons by building natural bridges immune to rot and white ant infestation.

The Khasis guide roots and vines from the native rubber tree (Ficus elastica) across streams, using hollowed out betel nut trees to guide the roots. When the roots reach the opposite bank they are allowed to take root. Taking 10-15 years to complete (and sometimes much longer), these bio-bridges can last for centuries.

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