Sunday, August 21, 2005

Receptacle for the Recyclable

Lynn Becker has the lowdown on AIA Chicago's Young Architect's Forum's competition for a recycling receptacle in Chicago. I strolled over to Daley Plaza after work to check out the 25 finalists. My favorite:

Missing image - YAF.jpg

Sure, it's goofy and looks like something out of a Pixar film, but it also integrates itself with the existing trash cans (some around the Loop and other parts of the city are different - nicer - but this scheme could be modified to fit onto those, too) and proposes reusing newspapers, over just recycling, their bundled masses poking from the green orb for easy grabbing. These are a couple good ideas that set it apart from the other schemes, ones that tended to be from the ground up and lacking in a sense of humor.

12 comments:

  1. John, was it here on your site that I first read about this sort of recycling program in another city? The adaptation to the trash can, as I recall, resembled something like a tool belt with compartments for PET bottles, papers, etc. Good idea for recycling, and an aid to those hardworking bottle and can collectors!

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  2. Hmmmmmm... quite funky. As a student of architecture I feel it has added a new dimension to recycled receptacle. Good show.. take care.

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  3. Interesting idea, although I'm not sure how many people will want to roll up their newspapers to fit them into the receptacle. Also, how do potential re-users see which papers are 'available'?

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  4. The idea is wonderful, and the whimsy adds a touch of humor to the bleh world of recycling. I think the public would respond well to something like this. I could see the little orbs getting nicknames like the bean did...

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  5. Speaking as a newspaper addict, I would love to see those bins adopted. I don't know how many times I've wanted a newspaper and couldn't find one or -- and this is the really important bit -- tried to leave my newspaper where someone else could take it only to have some illiterate slob with a cleaning fetish throw it away seconds later.

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  6. Cool idea but it looks tacky, like Cows on Parade. The better design is the 2nd pic on Lynn Becker's site.

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  7. I used to live in the Mid-west and would like to know how the newspaper recepticle performs during a spring storm. I do think they are useful and I enjoy the color.

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  8. This is done informally by riders getting off Metro-North railroad in Grand Central here in NYC; its nice to see an attempt to formalize it.

    I see two problems - rain and cleaning. A couple of pieces of gum and it might not look so good.

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  9. Nice ones. What does happen with the newspapers when it's raining asnd very windy?

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  10. Disclosure: I am one of the competitors that did not place, I am not sour grapes-- the winners have merits in aesthetics and concept, but I have to voice my displeasure in the functionality. Both concepts don't seem to take any fucntional considerations into making neighborhood recycling an integral part of Chicago life. They come across more as boutique-one-offs that would look interesting, but would never get placed in _every_ neighborhood, on _every_ corner.

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  11. Geat idea....for recycling in architecture take a look at www.recyclicity.net cick 'english' and 'exampledesigns'

    A dutch pilotversion but the infrastructure is bilangual so check it out.

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  12. I'm guessing that when it rains the newspapers aren't reused, but recycled, though I don't know at what point they're put into the blue bags...when Streets and San comes around?

    Craig - Back when I first posted about the competition in June, I remarked on the lofty ambition of the undertaking, asking entrants to "re-investigate the process of recycling in its entirety, from the material manufacturing process to the consumption choices made by individuals to the existing recycling infrastructure and its role in the collection process."

    That seemed a lot to ask for a six-week duration, and I think the competitors reacted accordingly, creating kiosks that articulate the different containers for the various recylcables (paper, plastic, alum, glass) via form, color, size, etc. Rethinking the process isn't apparent, at least in the finalists. I'd be curious to see your entry. Will it be up on your blog soon?

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