This dynamic parking garage doubles as a public sculpture

January 13, 2020 by  
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In Denmark’s fourth-largest city of Aalborg, Copenhagen-based architecture firm Sangberg has designed a deceptively simple parking garage that offers much more than parking spaces. Dubbed the Parking House G2, the monolithic building features a dynamic and lightweight facade of extruded aluminum slats that “animates itself” in different ways depending on how and from where it’s viewed. The aluminum slats of the playful graphic facade were also engineered with reusability in mind and to encourage the growth of habitat for birds and insects.  Located in a part of Aalborg that’s currently being transformed from an industrial harbor to a new multi-use neighborhood, the Parking House G2 references the industrial heritage of its surroundings with its monolithic aluminum construction, while injecting new life with its sculptural appearance. “Whether you’re driving by in a car or you’re passing by as a pedestrian, your experience will differ as the facade animates itself in accordance to the speed travelled,” the architects said on the Sangberg blog . “The expression also changes whether it is viewed nearby or far away, from straight on or from the side – and with the light conditions and seasons.” The building’s facade gets its dynamic characteristics from the subtle variations in the profiles of the light gray aluminum slats that surround the concrete frame like a piece of cloth. In addition to creating a textural expression, the angled slats are spaced apart to let natural light and ventilation into the building. The facade also provides opportunities for greenery to take hold, a feature that was inspired by the master plan for the area that includes a green buffer zone along Nyhavnsgade, a major thoroughfare near the harbor. Related: Denmark’s first timber parking garage will be enveloped in greenery Completed over two years, the 15,200-square-meter building includes 590 parking spaces. The aluminum facade can be easily disassembled and recycled for use in other building projects. Its compact build, sustainable design, and its playful facade earned the project an Aalborg Municipality building award.  + Sangberg Images by Ramus Hjortshøj – COAST Studio

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This dynamic parking garage doubles as a public sculpture

Stunning new prefab kit home centers on sustainability

December 20, 2019 by  
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Michigan-based Hygge Supply is known as a leader in the world of sustainable home design thanks to its customizable kit homes. Now, the company has unveiled the Birch Le Collaboration House — an incredible house that highlights how the company’s innovative, prefab designs can marry sustainability and high-end luxury. Founded by entrepreneur Kelly Sean Karcher, Hygge Supply creates what it calls “kit homes,” — sustainable, high-end prefab home designs that are customizable to virtually any taste or style. The company ships its kit homes all over the United States. Karcher explained, “What sets Hygge Supply apart is the focus on high design, sustainability and simplicity.” Related: Cube Haus seeks to solve the housing crisis with affordable prefab homes To highlight its unique kit homes, the company recently built a gorgeous, contemporary house in a forest, just steps away from Michigan’s Lake Leelenau. Like all of its projects, Hygge Supply’s Birch Le Collaboration House is made from structural insulated panels (SIPs) and steel framing. This framework allows the prefab home to be built to the owner’s specifications and easily delivered to the building site, leaving zero waste behind. Combining the best of minimalist , Scandinavian design with environmental sustainability, the contemporary home kit includes several high-end materials provided by Hygge Supply’s like-minded partners. The home is clad in Thermory’s responsibly sourced wood panels, while all of the home’s doors and windows were produced using environmentally friendly manufacturing processes. Floor-to-ceiling glass panels wrap around sections of the home, not only creating a seamless connection between the exterior and interior, but also providing the interior with an abundance of natural light. The interior design revolves around the idea that top-of-the-line, eco-friendly furnishings don’t have to be prohibitively expensive. For example, the kitchen features Durat countertops that are made from 30-50 oercent recycled hard plastics and are 100 percent recyclable. Additionally, no-VOC powder coat color was used throughout the home. The beautiful home features one of the company’s most popular layouts, a three-bedroom, two-and-a-half-bath space with multiple connections to the exterior. What’s more, the Birch Le Collaboration House can be rented out by potential buyers who would like to test it out before ordering a Hygge Supply kit for themselves. Karcher invites guests to enjoy the sustainable home as a serene retreat that could possibly be their permanent home. “This home highlights the best of Hygge Supply: minimalist design, modern finishes, high comfort and expansive windows that draw the natural world in,” Karcher said. “We invite people to put down the concept drawings and come live immersively in this intimate space. It’s a perfect spot to retreat and it may inspire you to envision your own modern sanctuary.” + Hygge Supply Via Dwell Photography by Will Johnson via Hygge Supply

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Stunning new prefab kit home centers on sustainability

World’s largest 3D-printed building opens in Dubai after 2 weeks of construction

December 17, 2019 by  
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Quickly gaining popularity as an affordable and sustainable way to build, 3D printing is becoming a go-to construction choice for architects around the world. In fact, one Boston-based company, Apis Cor , well-known for its 3D-printed architecture, has just completed construction on the world’s largest 3D printed building. Located in Dubai, the 6,998-square-foot building was completed in just two weeks. Working under its motto, “we print buildings,” Apis Cor has become a prominent leader in the world of 3D-printed architecture. From a tiny home in Moscow to affordable housing developments in California and Louisiana, its state-of-the-art techniques have been used for various types of projects. Related: New 3D house printer cranks out 1,000 square feet a day Although the company is accustomed to building in various parts of the world, Dubai ‘s harsh conditions put its standard methods of printing to the test. Dubai is known for its severe climate, in which the temperatures rise and drop suddenly. As such, the materials used in the printing process for this particular building had to be able to withstand extreme heat and cold . “The Dubai climate is very harsh — temperature and humidity change significantly even within a day,” said Nikita Cheniuntai, founder and CEO of Apis Cor. “The material has to behave the same way all the time, despite the changing environmental conditions.” Working on such a large project presented additional challenges. The construction site spanned approximately 7,000 square feet, which, under normal building circumstances, would require assembly of ample scaffolding. However, because the company’s custom, car-sized 3D printer is mobile, the building was constructed directly onsite faster and more efficiently than a traditional construction project. Along with three workers and a single construction crane, the machine printed out the structure section by section using Apis Cor’s gypsum-based mixture. Later, traditional constructions methods were used to install the windows and roof, and rebar supports were added to reinforce the walls. The resulting building, which will house administrative offices for the Dubai Municipality, has a white facade that reflects the sun rays. The concrete and gypsum printing materials created by Apis Cor also provide the building with a naturally insulated envelope, keeping the interior at a pleasant temperature year-round. + Apis Cor Via Dwell Images via Apis Cor

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World’s largest 3D-printed building opens in Dubai after 2 weeks of construction

30,000 recycled water bottles make up this 3D-printed pavilion

December 16, 2019 by  
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Dubai-based design studio MEAN Design has unveiled an eye-catching pavilion in the front esplanade of the Dubai International Financial Center. Not only is the bulbous structure with multicolored “teeth” visibly stunning, but the unique pavilion, called Deciduous, was constructed entirely with 3D printing technology that turned 30,000 discarded water bottles into a plastic polymer to use as the base material. The Deciduous pavilion is a stunning example of how 3D printing is not only a viable and affordable construction method of the future but also a revolutionary system that can help reduce plastic waste . According to MEAN Design, the structure was printed using a polymer filament that was made from 30,000 recycled water bottles. The bottles were recycled into the filament and then used to print interlocking parts. The base is also made from 3D-printed concrete, hybridized with the polymer parts. Related: Croatia Pavilion’s Cloud Pergola is one of the world’s largest 3D-printed structures Unveiled at this year’s ‘Art Nights’ event at the Dubai International Financial Center, the pavilion ‘s concept was inspired by autumn. Its name, Deciduous, refers to trees that seasonally shed leaves in the autumn months. The innovative, 3D printing system, which was conceived using computer modeling, allowed the parts to be easily prefabricated off-site and then assembled onsite with little construction materials. In fact, all of the parts of the pavilion were mechanically joined without the need for heavy machinery. As for the design itself, the unique pavilion is a labyrinth-like, white volume with multicolored spokes rising out of the base, resulting in a bulbous, organic figure. The designers invite visitors to enter into the pavilion’s “abstracted botanical form” to explore their relationship with nature . + MEAN Design Photography by NAARO via MEAN Design

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30,000 recycled water bottles make up this 3D-printed pavilion

This versatile, waterproof parka is made with recycled PET bottles

November 18, 2019 by  
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Oftentimes, less is more — like when you can carry a coin purse instead of a weighty bag. When it comes to coats and jackets, choosing a light-yet-durable option is best, so you don’t find yourself in a mummy-tight arctic coat when all you really need is a lightweight, waterproof shell. That is where the Maium Lightweight Parka comes in to play. Of course, we’re all about sustainability, so while having the right jacket for the job is ideal, it’s even better when that jacket is also kind to the environment. The Maium Lightweight Parka fits the bill here, too. As with all Maium raincoats, the Lightweight Parka is made using recycled PET bottles — and we all know that diverting plastic out of landfills is a good move. Maium ensures all of its jackets are also manufactured under fair, safe and healthy working conditions. Related: Labo Mono turns plastic water bottles into Urban Jackets for cycling and everyday use Even when you want to support companies that keep sustainability in mind, the products should still live up to your expectations. Enter the versatility, convenience and great design of Maium Lightweight Parkas. The Maium Lightweight Parka is, of course, lightweight. That makes it easy to haul around from weekend sporting events to thousand-mile backpacking treks along the Pacific Crest Trail. In addition to being light, it packs down into a compressed size for easy storage and retrieval. For versatility, the parka has adjustable cuffs to fit a variety of wrist sizes and to accommodate bulky, long-sleeve clothing underneath. The waist and hood can also be adjusted. Plus, side zippers easily convert the parka into a poncho, which is especially convenient when you need the maneuverability to ride a bike. The newly released Maium Lightweight Parka is available for men and women in three color options: black, army green or iridescent. It retails for 155 euros (approximately $170). + Maium Images via Maium

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This versatile, waterproof parka is made with recycled PET bottles

Double your vacation fun on this gorgeous double decker bus hotel in Wales

November 18, 2019 by  
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Visitors to the incredibly idyllic area of the Teifi Valley in West Wales now have a quirky new accommodation to enjoy. The vintage 1964 Leyland Titan double decker bus has been renovated into a vibrant glamping location that sleeps up to six. Surrounded by 40 acres of organic farmland, the beautiful blue double decker is a great way for guests to reconnect with nature. The converted bus is located at Ceridwen Centre, an organic farm that offers a number of unique lodgings, such as converted barns, yurts and even a cool eco pod. Now, the farm has added its own double decker bus to its whimsical collection of accommodations. Related: Vintage red double decker bus is converted into a cool, retro hotel The double decker bus is a great choice for families looking to get away for a bonding experience. With a master room upstairs and two double rooms with a sofa bed downstairs, the converted bus sleeps up to six guests. Additionally, the bus offers a spacious indoor living and dining area. There is also a fully equipped kitchen and bathroom. For dining al fresco or simply taking in the natural surroundings with a fresh cup of coffee each morning, there is an open-air deck connected to the bus. Although the glamping property itself has plenty to offer in terms of long, leisurely strolls throughout the landscape, there is an abundance of things to do in the area. Onsite, there is a store that sells local produce and crafts as well as a bar for a fresh, cold pint. The lodging is just a mile from the village of Drefach Felindre, which offers more retail shops and restaurants. Of course, those seeking some outdoor thrills can check out activities in the beautiful Teifi Valley, such as mountain biking, rock climbing, canoeing or fishing. + Independent Cottages Images via Independent Cottages

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Double your vacation fun on this gorgeous double decker bus hotel in Wales

Sead Pod offers grassroots solution to air pollution and global warming

November 5, 2019 by  
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Gardening should be good for the environment, adding oxygen to the air, nutrients to the soil and filtering water for consumption. But plastic and toxins have become ubiquitous, leaving the home gardener to make intentional choices about which products to use. That’s where Sead Pod comes in, a vertical garden made using sustainable practices and recycled materials . Sead (Sustainable Ecology, Adaptive Design) Pod offers a simple plastic planter for bringing gardens into the smallest spaces while reusing plastic, which is problematic for the environment. The pod simply clips on to any chain link fencing, providing water efficiency from the vertical garden design while diverting plastic from the landfill. Related: This self-sustaining planter doesn’t require sunlight for plants to thrive “The Sead Pod represents a new way of thinking about green design in an urban context,” said Bryan Meador, Plant Seads’ Founder and Chief Design Officer. “By reimagining existing architectural elements like chain link fencing as a tool in the fight against climate change, we’re able to leap into the green movement immediately, fighting climate change at the grassroots level and making our cities cleaner, healthier, and more livable—right now.”  Based in Kingston, New York, Meador is familiar with the limitations of urban gardens so he designed the Sead Pod to jump start the urgency of climate change. What he described as “the sluggish response of government and multinational companies” lead him to take action, experimenting with 3d printing and rapid prototype development to finalize the design . Proving his self-labeled impatience, Meador had the Sead Pod designed, manufactured and released in less than nine months. “Our generation is the first to be born into Climate Change. This crisis is not hypothetical to us, and we’re tired of waiting around for others to address this issue in a meaningful way,” Meador said in a press release.  With lofty goals of tackling CO2 emissions at a grassroots level, the Sead Pod gives everyone the ability to contribute to the solution. Imagine every chain link fence in your community covered in greenery and you begin to see the potential. The pods also connect to chain link material the size of a picture frame and Sead Pod offers five sizes of sead frames to suit the needs of every home and office. They are designed to be durable for long-term use even when exposed to harsh elements, not to mention, they are recyclable at the end of their life cycle. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Thursday, October 31, 2019 8:59 PM PDT. + Plant Seads Images via Plant Seads

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Sead Pod offers grassroots solution to air pollution and global warming

This plant-based ski wax keeps nasty chemicals off the snowpack

October 1, 2019 by  
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For those looking to hit the slopes as the weather cools down, a new eco-friendly ski wax will not only help you glide through the fluffy snowpack but will also help keep the environment free of the dangerous chemicals found in most ski waxes. In a world where nearly all ski wax is made from petroleum, the innovative MountainFLOW eco wax is made entirely from plants. The sight of white snow-covered hills is enough for most skiers to call off of work and hit the slopes, hopefully in a sustainable retreat . But whatever we put on our skis quickly enters the snowpack, eventually making its way into local streams and rivers. Considering that most ski wax is made out of petroleum, this means that pollution during the ski months increases substantially for these water systems. Related: Top 6 sustainable winter resorts for snowboarding and skiing in the US Thankfully, the eco-conscious team at MountainFLOW has kicked off a new Kickstarter campaign to announce the launch of North America’s only line of plant-based ski wax . Designed to keep harmful chemicals out of the environment, this eco-friendly product is rapidly catching the attention of the ski world. Over the years, the team has worked to develop a petroleum-free wax that offers the same hydrophobicity, durability and ease of application that most traditional petroleum-based waxes offer. Not only have they created a product that does just that, but they have created a ski wax that is much better for the environment. Other plant-based ski waxes have been made with soy. Although the MountainFLOW wax does include a little bit of soy, the eco-friendly product uses a high-quality combination of other plant-based waxes that offer a faster, more durable product. The MountainFLOW packaging is also made from 100 percent recycled materials and is completely biodegradable. + MountainFLOW Images via MountainFLOW

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This plant-based ski wax keeps nasty chemicals off the snowpack

Innovative orange juicer 3D prints bioplastic cups out of leftover orange peels

September 16, 2019 by  
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International design firm Carlo Ratti Associati has developed an experimental circular juice bar that uses orange peels to make deliciously fresh-squeezed juice but that’s not all. Using filament made from the leftover orange peels, the “Feel the Peel” machine then 3D prints disposable cups to drink the refreshing juice on the spot. The prototype juicer, which was designed in collaboration with global energy company Eni , is a 10-foot tall orange squeezer machine topped with a massive dome. The dome is comprised of several round racks that hold up to 1,500 oranges. The machine’s base is installed with a 3D printer . Related: 10 ways 3D printing is disrupting the architecture industry Once the order is placed for freshly squeezed juice, the innovative machine begins to work its magic. The oranges slide down to a machine that squeezes the juice out of the two halves. The leftover peels fall through a tube where they accumulate at the bottom of the machine. There, the peels are dried, milled and mixed with Polylactic Acid (PLA), converting them into a bioplastic material. The bioplastic is then heated and melted into a filament that is used by the machine’s built-in 3D printer to create recyclable 3D printed cups on the spot that are filled with freshly-squeezed juice. The innovative prototype is a study of how the even the most simple, everyday treats in our lives can be part of a circular, zero-waste economy . “The principle of circularity is a must for today’s objects,” says Carlo Ratti, “Working with Eni, we tried to show circularity in a very tangible way, by developing a machine that helps us to understand how oranges can be used well beyond their juice. The next iterations of Feel the Peel might include new functions, such as printing fabric for clothing from orange peels”. The Feel the Peel juice bar made its debut at an event in Rimini, Italy this summer, but will be installed at the Singularity University Summit in Milan on October 8 and 9, 2019. + Carlo Ratti Associati Via Wired Photography by Nicola Giorgetti and video by ActingOut

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Plumen Hive shade is 3D-printed and biodegradable

September 11, 2019 by  
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Light bulbs and lamp shades go together like peanut butter and jelly so when Plumen had an idea for a natural looking shade, they turned to designer Luke Deering with very specific goals in mind: make it elegant and make it sustainable . The Hive shade is the result of a vision to use biomorphic design to make a shade look like a natural honeycomb . Shadowing the design after well-sculpted art of the hive not only brings natural elements inside the living space, but also gives a nod to some of nature’s best architects — the bees. The woven material allows light to filter through while defusing the bright light of the bulb. Related: Benjamin Spöth weaves leftover birch plywood into beautiful Upcycle lamps While the design elements are striking as an idea and on paper, the finished product raises the bar above typical design with a unique production that is a result of the newest 3D printer technology. This process streamlines the manufacturing and supports the sustainability goals of the project too. That’s because the shade is printed from PLA bioplastic, a material that is made up of 90 percent recycled plastic and plant products. The U.K.-based company wanted to create a closed loop with the Hive shade and began by sourcing the manufacturing nearby to alleviate transport emissions. In addition, the shades are printed on demand to avoid unnecessary waste . To complete the circle, the Hive shade is commercially compostable and will biodegrade in about six months at the end of its usable life cycle. Like any good home decor, the Hive shade comes in a variety of options to suit your needs. The two available sizes fit over two of the most common bulb options from Plumen. There’s a choice of six colors: White, Black, Moss Green, Gold, Orange and Blue. Plus, you can submit special color requests. The shades fit neatly into the neck of the Plumen pendant, available in black or copper so you can make your selections and put together your desired look without worrying about the effect on the planet . It’s a bright idea! + Plumen Images via Plumen

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Plumen Hive shade is 3D-printed and biodegradable

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