Print Your City, the innovative initiative created by the Dutch research and design studio The New Raw moves from the concept to the urban scale. Following the XXX bench prototype presented last year in Amsterdam, Print Your City launches its first Zero Waste Lab in Thessaloniki (Greece), equipped with a robotic arm and recycling plants, implemented by Coca-Cola in Greece. Citizens can bring their plastic waste, design customized urban furniture and actively participate in the recycling process. The laboratory closes the cycle of plastic waste with advanced technologies at the local level.
The New Raw demonstrates that it is possible to print 3D urban furnishings from household waste in plastic or flakes of ground recycled products, redesigning public spaces within the Greek city.
"Plastic has a design flaw. It's designed to last forever, but we often use it once and then throw it away. With Print Your City, we strive to show a better way to use plastics in long-lasting and high-value applications "- say Panos Sakkas and Foteini Setaki, founders of The New Raw.
The initial prototypes were printed in the 2018 summer. Halfway between tree pots, benches and street furniture, they stimulated the interaction of citizens at Nea Paralia, the main seafront promenade in Thessaloniki. Since a standard prototype required 12 hours to print a jar from an average of 100 plastic kilos, the designers decided to improve the quality of the materials and optimize the design options in order to reduce production time.
This second phase was officially launched with the central opening of Thessaloniki, where citizens can learn about the process of recycling plastics, read the circular economy and design new furnishing elements for their neighborhoods.
Interested individuals and organizations can also consult the website Print Your City on the spot or from the comfort of home.
Citizens can model the designs and uses of each unique item according to their needs. They can choose which public space will host their piece, as well as the shape, color and specific integrated functions that will promote a healthy and environmentally friendly lifestyle in the city. Each item can contain a bicycle rack or a vaulting horse, a tree pot or even a dog feeding bowl or a bookcase. Furthermore, the geometries are based on ergonomic curvatures that allow a relaxed posture of the body.
As soon as a citizen completes his project, the Print Your City website provides information on the amount of plastic that will need to be recycled to generate enough raw material for the 3D printing process.
Since the launch of the website in December 2018, over 3.000 different designs have been presented. Among the many options available to citizens on the website, the first public space that, starting from January 2019, was chosen to host the pieces of Print Your City is the central Hanth Park. For the duration of the project, The New Raw aims to recycle four tons of plastic waste, which is roughly equivalent to the same amount produced by 14 households in Greece.
Print Your City is an ongoing research and design project initiated by The New Raw in 2016. The Thessaloniki project is developed as part of the "Zero Waste Future" program, conceived and implemented by Coca-Cola in Greece, in collaboration with the Municipality of Thessaloniki, Ecorec and Ogilvy's Greece. Print Your City by The New Raw is one of the initiatives and a key factor for citizens' behavioral change.
Print Your City - Zero Waste Lab
November 2018 - May 2019
Mon, Wed, Fri: 9.30-14.30 | Wed: 17.00-19.00 | Sun: 12.00 15.00
Address: Egnatias str. 154, 546 36, Thessaloniki (Greece)
Lead designer: The New Raw www.thenewraw.org
Project team: Panos Sakkas, Foteini Setaki, Stavroula Tsafou, Andrea Sebastianeli, Andreas Kyriacou, Nickolas Maslarinos, Jan Schmidt
Client: Coca-Cola in Greece
Partners: Municipality of Thessaloniki, Ecorec, Ogilvy Greece
Location: Hanth Park (city center)
Web developer: Teis de Greve
Animations and video: Philippe Charpentier
photography: Stefanos Tsakiris