How this Plastic Trash becomes Furniture? | Print Your City | Recycling & 3D Printed Furniture

How this Plastic Trash becomes Furniture? | Print Your City | Recycling & 3D Printed Furniture


Plastic – recycled and given a new form and
function. These chairs in Greece’s port city Thessaloniki
are products of the ‘Print your city’ project. Plastic waste is upcycled as furniture, using
a 3D printer. The idea came from Dutch design studio ‘The
New Raw’. “I’m sitting on a piece of furniture that’s
made out of thousands of plastic lids. I don’t know the exact number, but it amounts
to 68 kilograms – which is a lot of plastic packaging material.” Panos Sakkas is an architect and co-founder
of the design studio. “The aim of The New Raw is to see how plastic
trash can be used as a raw material for 3D printers and, in doing so, find new production
methods that can be used anywhere in the world. Plastic waste is available everywhere.” “This project is unique in Greece and Europe. People can become part of it, by bringing
their plastic trash for recycling here and at the same time design furniture for public
spaces in their cities.” The website of Print Your City offers various
templates for furniture pieces. The ones selected most often, go into print. As soon as a new design template goes online,
the amount of recycled plastic needed for the 3D printing process is calculated automatically. It takes about seventy kilos of plastic and
some ten hours to make a park bench using a 3D printer. “Plastic is a valuable material. It was conceived to be long-lasting, but we
generally use it for just a few seconds and then throw it away. So, it’s a good idea to use the material for
things that are meant to last – like the furniture that we’re producing here.” Nine of the colorful chairs have already been
placed around the center of Thessaloniki, and more are in the planning. Eventually, the idea is to spread them all
around the city. And if the park benches ever fall apart – they’ll
simply be recycled, just like any other plastic waste. “The process happens in four steps. First, the plastic waste is sorted, then it’s
cleaned, shredded and melted. Then, it goes into the 3D printer to produce
the furniture for Print Your City.” “The robotic arm presses the semi-liquid mass
of plastic into the shape we’ve pre-determined on the computer. The plastic waste is then melted in the machine
behind this wall.” The combination of recycling and design seems
to be a hit with Thessaloniki’s residents and visitors alike. “It’s very impressive to see that you can
transform waste into something esthetic in this way. Everyone can enjoy it and sit on it with their
friends. It’s a definite gain – there’s nothing negative
about it.” “I didn’t even realize it was plastic. When I sat down, it was simply perfect. In terms of temperature, it was warm. It somehow conforms to the shape of the body,
and yet it’s sturdy and offers a certain stability and support.” “The message we hope to get across with this
project is: nothing should go to waste. Everyone should understand that. Plastic and other things we call ‘trash’ today
will be seen as raw materials in the future.” Knowing that 68 kilos of plastic were recycled
to make this furniture should make people feel good about putting their feet up for
a while!

2 Replies to “How this Plastic Trash becomes Furniture? | Print Your City | Recycling & 3D Printed Furniture”

  1. Awesome idea. Congratulations to the engineers and the team involved in making this possible. Future generations will really be thankful for solving the plastic trash menace. 🤗👶💃👌👍🙏

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