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December 2007

Ohio solid waste organization selects green building options

The Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio (SWACO) and RASTRA have broken ground on an $8.3 million facility in South Columbus which will produce RASTRA products. RASTRA is an insulated foam construction system that provides a permanent framework for a reinforced concrete grid which forms load-bearing walls and other components of a building. It is manufactured by grinding polystyrene (Styrofoam) and mixing it with cement.

SWACO interim executive director Ron Mills hails the product as one with multiple advantages to Greater Columbus. “Central Ohio builders will soon have a local green alternative to traditional building methods, one that provides stability, strength, and energy savings. It also brings benefits to taxpayers as Rastra’s use of polystyrene will save space at SWACO’s Franklin County landfill.”

Currently, polystyrene makes up about six per cent (6%) of what is sent to the landfill (annually 87,000 cubic yards by volume).

This $8.3 million project is expected to create 47 jobs within 3 to 4 years. The project is funded in part by a $2 million loan from the Ohio Department of Development.

Rastra will be supported by a City of Columbus Jobs Creation Tax Credit of 65% for a period of 8 years in consideration of the company’s investment of $3.9 million in new personal property and the creation of new jobs.
Rastra’s Columbus facility will produce about 3,500 square feet of wall per shift, which is enough material to construct a mid-size house. After a short start-up period, there will be two shifts. The production will use in excess of one million cubic feet of post consumer and post industrial polystyrene waste.