Hawaii School Building Built Out of Plastic Lego-Like Blocks

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Lihue, Hawaii

A Hawaii school building has been built entirely out of plastic Lego-like blocks composed of marine debris and household waste, a report said.

The New Zealand-based ByFusion Company constructed the plastic blocks that now make up the athletics pavilion near the soccer field at Island School in Lihue, The Garden Island reported Thursday.

The 20-foot (6-meter) building was revealed to the public Wednesday and is the first of its kind to be built on Kauai and in the United States using the ByFusion products, officials said.

"This demonstrates to the world how to combat the plastic crisis that's plagued our oceans," said Heidi Kujawa, ByFusion chief executive officer.

Each block is made of shredded, cleaned plastic waste compressed into a rectangle at the processing facility in New Zealand, company officials said.

The blocks were used to construct the building walls while the spaces in between were filled with traditional materials, officials said. Stucco was then used to seal and stabilize the blocks.

The County of Kauai, Surfrider Foundation, Island School, ByFusion and the island's construction community brought this pilot project to life, officials said.

The long-term goal is to bring a ByFusion facility to Hawaii that would bring manufacturing of the blocks closer to home and present a real potential for recycling marine debris in the state, said Carl Berg, senior science adviser for Surfrider Kauai.

"We want to leave a legacy behind," Kauai Mayor Derek Kawakami said. "One thing we don't want to leave behind is our opala (trash)."

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