The Montague Earthship & How To Build an Earthship in Ontario
This page was created to showcase the construction of the Montague Earthship, and to provide a ton of helpful resources for anyone looking to build an Earthship in Ontario, Canada.
I've included a list of Earthships already built in Ontario with video tours, as well as Earthship Architects, Structural Engineers and Mechanical Engineers that are experienced with this building style who can help you design and build your own.
You'll also find the full-length documentary about Earthship founder Michael Reynolds and the three books he wrote on Earthship construction and how to build one.
What is an Earthship?
An Earthship is a passive solar home made from natural and recycled materials. The primary building component of an Earthship is used tires, which are rammed with dirt to create 400-pound steel-belted "bricks."
Watch the video tour of a completed Earthship in Taos, New Mexico in the video on the right. Once The Montague Earthship is complete I will probably replace that video with a tour of it.
Earthships in Ontario, Canada
In recent years, a heap of Earthships have been constructed in Ontario. Some owners enjoy speaking publicly about their homes and are happy to answer your questions, schedule visits, etc. and others like to keep things private.
Below I've included a list of the more popular ones who have been incredibly helpful to me when I've reached out to ask questions. I've included video tours and their websites where you can learn more about their builds and contact them if need be.
Architects, Engineers & Builders
To build an Earthship you'll need either an Architect to create your design, or to buy pre-made drawings from Earthship Biotecture, a structural engineer to sign off on your design, and a mechanical engineer to help you design your air exchange system (to keep air flowing in winter when the windows are closed).
This section can save you weeks or months of hunting down the right people to help you design and build your Earthship.
Earthship Structural Engineers
Earthship Mechanical Engineers
Earthship Construction Companies
Want to hire a few people to help you build? Or hire a team of experienced Earthship builders to build it for you? The following companies offer Earthship construction and support services.
An Earthship design and construction company owned by Architect Michael Reynolds
An Earthship construction company owned by Michael Reynold's son
Southwest Sustainable Builders
A sustainable building design and construction company owned by Ted Elsasser
Earthships Ontario Facebook Group
Find many more Earthship enthusiasts on the Earthships Ontario Facebook group:
Where to Get Tires?
An Earthship can have between 1000-1500 tires so the gathering process can take some time. Thankfully it can be done gradually as you build by visiting local tire shops with a trailer or truck and taking their used tires off their hands. An amazing 'hack' for getting tires is to call Trillium Recycling who will deliver a full truckload of tires (1000+ tires) directly to your property for free! However, keep in mind you'll probably have hundreds of tires to deal with at the end. I'm going to get all mine individually using a 16-foot trailer (about 45 tires fit on these trailers at a time).
Garbage Warrior Documentary (2007)
Garbage Warrior is a film about the inventor of architect architecture Mike Reynolds and how he developed the Earthship style of building as well as his struggle with the laws of Taos, New Mexico, and the location of his experimental Earthship community, in order to receive approval to build experimental Earthship homes which are unrecognizable to local building codes.
Building The Montague Earthship
I've decided to document the entire building process of The Montague Earthship both for my own satisfaction and to help others with their own Earthship building projects. Below you'll find all the articles I've written, most of which include videos I made to show you how it's done step-by-step.
Timeline for the Earthship Montague Build
My goal for 2021 is to get the building permit approved and get started on pounding tires. By the end of 2022 I want to have the Earthship completely built and be moved in.
Be sure to subscribe to receive updates on the build so you can watch it unfold.
People all across the world, with big hearts and unbreakable human spirits, are escaping dystopian cities and creating a new and better culture from the ground up. For many of them, the process begins with an Earthship home. No form of human habitation even comes close to the resilience, structural indestructibility and freedom provided by…Read More
Building The Earthship Global Model Near Ottawa, Canada | Earthship Construction Plans & Modifications
In this article, I’ll reveal my custom-designed Earthship with top Architect from Nova Scotia, and why I’ve chosen to scrap those plans and build the Earthship Global model, with a few custom modifications, instead. You’ll also learn about The Bastard Tirehouse, an Earthship being built by a family just 30 minutes away in Portland, Ontario.…Read More
Heaps and Heaps of downed trees stacked 30 feet high can be seen on Let’s Grow Farm for almost 1500 feet. These trees are what remain after loggers cleared 10 acres of forest, ordered by the previous owner in preparation for selling the place. In 2021, one of my primary tasks has been sawing the downed…Read More
Before you build a million-pound Earthship home, make sure you do a soil test so your house doesn’t shift OR SINK! If the soil at your building site isn’t a good foundation for underneath an Earthship, your architect and/or structural engineer will probably recommend that you use a tractor or hire an excavator to scrape…Read More