SEATTLE - When we heard the University of Washington created Greenroads Foundation was honoring the City of Bellingham for a sustainable road project, we thought that might be a good story.
When we found out what materials the city was using, we knew it was. It all started when a local nonprofit group was contracted to replace 400 toilets in a public housing building.
"They asked me, 'can you do anything with the old high flush toilets?' recalls City Project Engineer Freeman Anthony. "And I said I think so.’"
Anthony decided to see if the old toilets could be ground up and made into concrete. A local recycling yard and concrete maker agreed to try and it worked.
The porcelain from toilets tested well and the next step was to find a place to pour the substance dubbed Poticrete, into an actual project. They found in an industrial area that needed a sidewalk.
They will not monitor it to see how it holds up but so far Poticrete is looking good and may offer the city a reliable commodity for more concrete projects.