3D Printing

Print Your City! turns plastic waste into 3D-printed street furniture

Print Your City! turns plastic...
Print Your City! is an ongoing research project looking to turn plastic waste into functional furniture
Print Your City! is an ongoing research project looking to turn plastic waste into functional furniture
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Print Your City! is an ongoing research project looking to turn plastic waste into functional furniture
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Print Your City! is an ongoing research project looking to turn plastic waste into functional furniture
The XXX bench is 3D-printed using pellets from municipal waste or flakes from ground up products
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The XXX bench is 3D-printed using pellets from municipal waste or flakes from ground up products
The XXX bench prototype has been produced using a large scale pellet extrusion 3D printer
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The XXX bench prototype has been produced using a large scale pellet extrusion 3D printer
The XXX bench seats two to four people
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The XXX bench seats two to four people
XXX bench users need to "find equilibrium together, or use their energy to rock each other"
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XXX bench users need to "find equilibrium together, or use their energy to rock each other"
The XXX bench is 3D-printed using pellets from municipal waste or flakes from ground up products
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The XXX bench is 3D-printed using pellets from municipal waste or flakes from ground up products
The XXX bench prototype is the first of a number of street-wise recycled plastic products from the Print Your City! project
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The XXX bench prototype is the first of a number of street-wise recycled plastic products from the Print Your City! project
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Amsterdam residents are reported to be responsible for about 23 kg (50 lb) of plastic waste per person per year. Rotterdam research and design studio The New Raw says that the annual waste from every three residents should be enough to 3D print two big plastic benches for deployment in public places throughout the capital of The Netherlands. And it's printed a prototype called the XXX bench to show the way.

The plastic used to 3D print each 50 kg (110 lb) XXX bench is sourced from pellets from municipal waste or flakes from ground up products. The 150 cm (59 in) long, 80 cm (31.5 in) wide prototype has been produced using a large scale pellet extrusion 3D printer and seats two to four people. The New Raw says that it's designed to rock, with users needing to "find equilibrium together, or use their energy to rock each other."

XXX bench users need to "find equilibrium together, or use their energy to rock each other"
XXX bench users need to "find equilibrium together, or use their energy to rock each other"

"Cities provide a suitable field for large, long-lasting and easy to trace applications for recycled plastic," explained the studio. "In this field, the technology of 3D printing enables closing the material loop of plastic with a short recycling path and a zero waste production process. Furthermore it can combine modular repair and mass customization, making a more circular city feasible with more engaged citizens and less CO2 emissions."

The shape and size of the bench can be customized to meet specific needs, and businesses could also have logos or messages integrated into the design. And at the end of its useful life, the bench itself can be recycled – perhaps to make more street furniture.

The XXX bench is the first to hit the streets, but The New Raw's research project is already looking at broadening its range, including branching out to recycling bins, playgrounds and bus stops made with recycled plastic components.

The video below looks at the research project and the production process.

Source: Print Your City!

Print Your City! -3D printing in the Circular City-

View gallery - 7 images
5 comments
MerlinGuy
Until the first person rolls it over and sprains their neck then the city will remove them all. I love a bench your can't really sit on.
Alien
The bench design seems gimmicky - but the concept of recycling plastic waste into useable municipal items is excellent. So could this process be used to create household waste bins, water butts, etc. Surely the aim must be to recycle all plastic waste (or at least as much as is feasible)? ...presuming it can be done cost effectively.
c4jjm
Expanding on Merlin's and Aliens comments: Who uses benches most? Elderly, why then would they make a bench that has to be balanced by two or more individuals....??? Or think of the mayhem when a few pranksters happen upon a poor old person on one side, and the kids jump on, causing serious injury...
Cool Idea, bad design. Also bad name...how many people will be arrested for 'acts' on a bench begging to be miss-used, with a name like "XXX"
Lee Bell
Flatten the bottom and you have a nice bench seat. All you have now is multiple lawsuits on the horizon.
olivejunkie
I think most of the comments miss the main point of this article. From watching the Vimeo, the designers clearly created a modified polymer added to chips of waste plastic that could be 3D printed. That material is the incremental innovation - the polymer additive. Designers and design engineers know that applications of 3D printing have no bounds in terms of form and they make this clear in the same Vimeo. The bench is clearly designed to be 'playful' street furniture. It may not tick everyone's boxes ergonomically or in its function, but it isn't mass produced, it's a one-off and serves a PR purpose which is to draw attention to the material it is printed from and to the designers themselves who developed the design to a prototype stage.