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An Earthship Grows in Gallatin

by Rich and Laura Lynch

Marcus Sisk is a longtime resident of the Volunteer State - but somewhere along the way during his developmental years he became fascinated with "the Land of Enchantment" otherwise known as New Mexico. More specifically, his interest was turned to the idea of environmentally conscious construction in the form of Earthships - and their creator - pioneering architect Michael Reynolds.


The Gallatin Earthship continues to grow in Tennessee.

Sisk traveled to Taos in the Spring of 2013 to obtain his building certificate from the Earthship Institute and quickly returned home to begin applying his knowledge and newly acquired skills by beginning an off-grid project of his own in Sumner County. Marcus reported to us that he was able to acquire the hundreds of tires needed for the foundation walls of his structure for free from local repair shops. Thus revealing one of the major benefits of these unique dwellings - keeping trash out of the nation's landfills and incinerators.

As we entered the welcoming front room that served as a burgeoning greenhouse for Sisk we also observed the usage of glass bottles and aluminum cans embedded into the walls of the building - a common practice as we learned for Earthships that help enclose space while productively utilizing the waste stream. Less common is the raising of these structures in a moderate and moisture laden climate like Tennessee. Because Marcus brought a project invented for a more arid region to the central United States he has been dealing with a few setbacks caused by erosion and an invasion of overgrowth and algae. Still, he believes these challenges can be overcome with regular maintenance and upkeep.


The inviting greenhouse serves as an appealing entryway to the curious construction project.

Sisk is certain that Earthships can find a welcome home with wider usage in Tennessee. To that end he heads up Biotecture Tennessee - a sustainable construction and consulting services company that specializes in Earthships, passive solar greenhouses, and other natural homes. Marcus believes these structures can specially satisfy the needs of the local music market by helping to create enlightened and Earth conscious space for recording studios and rehearsal rooms. Now, he's just waiting for one big country star to jump on board and support the cause with a high-profile build. If that's you - get in touch with him today.

More About Earthships: An Earthship is a brand of passive solar earth shelter that is made of both natural and upcycled materials such as earth-packed tires, pioneered by architect Michael Reynolds. Earthships are predicated upon the idea that there are six human needs which can be addressed through environmentally sustainable building design including Energy, Garbage Management, Sewage Treatment, Shelter, Clean Water and Food. Earthship structures are intended to be "off-the-grid-ready" homes, with minimal reliance on public utilities and fossil fuels.


Builder Marcus Sisk and some of the standard Earthship building materials seen on site.

Related Links: For more information on EARTHSHIPS and the other organizations mentioned please visit the following links - Earthship Global | Biotecture Tennessee

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