Ecosistema Urbano architects  

Energy Carousel . Dordrecht

Ecosistema Urbano architects

The Centre for Visual Arts in Dordrecht In cooperation with the Amsterdam design bureau Carve invited 10 European design firms to develop inventive, resourceful and multi-age friendly playful objects to complete the design for the new public space, the Governeursplein square in the city of Dordrecht. Ecosistema Urbano’s “energy carousel” was one of the winning proposals chosen to be implemented.

A chandelier of hanging ropes....
... a shelter...
… an iconic meeting place for different age groups...
... that swivels...
... and produces energy....
... to turn into colored light in the evenings...

As a forest of revolving rope swings that hang at different lengths, the hanging rope seats towards the center of the structure accommodate smaller, younger children, while taller, older children may grab onto the shorter ropes on the outside.  The kinetic energy that is released by the children’s hanging and turning on the ropes is captured via carousel structure and stored in a battery underneath the play site.

When the park begins to lose light, the carousel’s battery supplies energy  to light up the structure. When the speed of play increases, the lamps will light up brighter. The colour of the lights also changes according to how much energy has been generated by the children on any particular day.
Ecosistema Urbano has designed this play structure with two particular focuses in mind. The first is to promote education through play, teaching children about alternative methods for generating electrical power with their own physical experiences. Second, was to use efficient materials that also serve to highlight the project’s unique design. The LED lights use a minimal amount of energy. The structure, unlike most play structures, uses a limited amount of steel – Its body is instead a tensegrity structure formed with ropes and textiles. The textile roof fabric protects children against rain and bright sunlight, and boasts a swirl pattern to accent the movement-to-energy potential of the structure.
We believe that through projects that emphasize the ecological pedagogy, we can send to the next generation of citizens a subtle message about the potential for creative and a more sustainable approach to urban design.
Apart from all that, it has not only a powerful market potential in different fields regarding playgrounds, recreation and education, but it also appears as an attractive support to several products and energy production systems. This real prototype already built in the city of Dordrecht, Netherlands, is proving its success there or at any other city.

Project: Ecosistema Urbano architects  (Belinda Tato + Jose Luis Vallejo)
Design team: Jaime Eizaguirre, Luisa Zancada, Johannes Kettler, Masatoshi Oka, Francesco Cingolani.
Energy Engineering: Roberto Suarez, AST engineering.
Masterplan Governeursplein + curatorial work + on site supervision: Elger Blitz,
Structural Engineering: Alejandra Albuerne.
Lighting consultant: Juan Jose García, Targetti Group.
Textile consultants: Javier Tejera / Marian Marco, Bat spain.
Prototyping: Metaplus
Location: Goeverneurplein square , Oud Krispijn, Dordrecht (Nederland).

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