One of America’s highest and most famous bridges, the route 64 crossing of the Rio Grande near Tao's, New Mexico was completed in 1965. A well proportioned cantilever truss with an attractive, curvilinear profile, the bridge received the American Institute of Steel Construction’s award for “Most Beautiful Long Span Steel Bridge” of 1966. In 1997 it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.
With its headwaters high up in the Rocky Mountains of south-central Colorado, the Rio Grande is America’s 4th longest river, stretching 1,885 miles (3,034 km) south to the Gulf of Mexico. Located 10 miles (16 km) west of Tao's, the deep gorge of the Rio Grande is the only major rift across an otherwise flat expanse of land between the mountains of the Carson National Forest and the Sangre de Cristos.
The local vendors never miss an opportunity, so after a quick jewelry shop on the side of the road it was time to visit The Greater Earth ship World Community.
What is the Greater Earth ship World Community you might ask. The aims are;
To reduce the economic and institutional barriers between people and sustainable housing.
To begin reversing the overall negative effect that conventional housing has on the planet.
To create a less stressful existence for people in an effort to reduce the stress that they in turn place on the planet and each other.
To interface economics and ecology in a way that immediately and tangibly affects current pressing problems with existing life styles.
To provide a direction for those who want to live in harmony with their environment.
To empower individuals with the inarguable forces of nature.
To find and distribute knowledge about sustainable lifestyles.
- Produce our own energy
- Harvest our own water
- Contain and treat our own sewage
- Manufacture our own bio-diesel fuel
- Grow much of our own food
- Our buildings heat and cool themselves
- Made utilizing discarded materials of modern society
One of the objectives of this sustainable community is to demonstrate the reuse of by-products of our society. To that end, the thermally dynamic buildings are structured with earth rammed automobile tires -approved on a case by case bases in New Mexico and around the world for twenty years. Aluminum cans and glass bottles are used as bricks for minor planter walls and partitions. Hard plastic containers are ground up and mixed with pumice in the waste water treatment systems. These materials will be collected for reuse at two transfer stations located at opposite ends of the property.
It was an interesting visit and I could actually imagine building and living in one of these houses.
We then headed back to Tao's for a final walk around town and the inevitable shop.
Tao's is filled with beautiful streets, many murals and gallery after gallery.
Besides jewellery, many wonderful paintings were also for sale.