The End is Near!

This past week has been the most exhausting and busy one. It was our last week for the project and we made two different models of public seating space and a planter using painted tires. We also made sure that we had achieved the goals we set out earlier After painting the tires, the group got back on Monday and Tuesday to work on building the bench and the planter. Portia and Mohammad (Rafi) set out to work in the morning, and the other group members eventually joined them and worked till sunset.

Careful measurements had to be made on the tires to pin point the location where holes needed to be drilled. We used bolts to hold the painted tires firmly together so that it remains stable when people sits on them. In order to build the second bench with a back-rest feature, we pushed rebar through the drilled holes and used bolts to support the structure. In the beginning, things were progressing quite slowly, mainly because of the difficulty in making measurements amongst other things. Once we sorted out by trial and error process, work was divided accordingly and it went pretty smooth and fast. There are still a few finishing touches that have to be done in order to fully complete our project. This includes making the planter and putting in the potted flower we have purchased. Rosina has kindly put together a video to show at the exhibition, and we have begun to work together to write our legacy report.

 

Portia and Sajid are sitting in the ‘Public Bench’ made of tires.

Overall, it has been an enduring and exuberating journey and we are looking forward to sharing our experiences about this project with the class and special guests next week at the exhibition.

 

At the end of the day’s work on Tuesday: Exhausted Portia sits in the ‘Public Bench’ with the back-rest feature.

 

 

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Tire Cutting!

Portia and Sehrish watch as Rosina and Rafi cut the tire in half!

After an unsuccessful first attempt at cutting the tires, the gang rolled up their sleeves, and armed with new material, got to it once again.

We rented a bolt cutter and a sawzall from the Lebel building, and began hacking away once again. At the suggestion of a Masters student, who was hanging around the Lebel building during our work, we fastened the tires as shown in the picture so that it is easier and safer to cut right down the middle. It was a very slow process getting through all of the metal bits embedded in the tire, but we managed to cut at least two full tires.

Later in the week, a few of us met Rod to discuss further options to make the cutting process faster. He showed us how to use the bench saw to cut the tires quickly and smoothly, as the blade is much thicker and runs on a powerful machine.

This upcoming weekend will hold a lot of importance as we test out the correct painting supplies and sealers.

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Final proposal for Midterm presentation

We found this chair to be closely related to our model which will help us to build ours.

 

Our group spent the better part of this week preparing for our midterm presentation. With our final sketches ready, all we need to do is to play with the materials to implement the physical model. We were able to find 25 free used tires of different shapes and sizes, and will be using different tools borrowed from the Lebel Sculpture space, setting up shop there for a few days to continue our progress.

 

We are thinking of installing this kind of table with the chairs shown at the top.

 

This weekend will be make or break in our realizations for our chosen material!  We’ve taken out a few different tools, depending on how difficult the tires will be to cut will be the deciding factor in our final outcome to be displayed in the course’s gallery show at Civic Space.

 

Another version of table-chair made of tire

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Progress on Design!

Our preliminary plans for the vacant lot (photoshop): Recycled tires made into planters and suspended from each wall. On the right, our second idea- two stacks of tire planters placed in the middle of the lot. This will be added, along with a seating area for passersby.

 

This week the team had two group meetings outside the class hours to decide on the final design and the materials required for Public Seating Space and Decoration. Much of the work was focused on reworking our original concept for Sidewalk Furniture Design.

We continued to explore the downtown area to look for a suitable place where we can implement our plan. While doing so, we came across a vacant lot between two buildings, which looked odd in the middle of the downtown area. We thought of decorating it as shown in the photoshoped picture above. We are in the process of contacting the owner of the vacant lot, so that we can implement our idea and have a ‘test run’.

Last week, we had a critical evaluation of the current chairs in the sidewalk. After noticing the uncomfortableness and the one way seating of the benches on Oulette, we knew we wanted ours to be round, so that the passerby can sit and view things from any angle they please. Keeping these points in mind, we did some research on the internet. We came up with few ideas and drew some sketches based on the criteria we had. A multifunctional seating space was in mind so ideas of adding a solar powered charging station for cell phones were also talked about.

 

Sketches of our ideas, slowly evolving.

 

After much deliberation and realizations, we concluded that our idea for our seating space needed to be simplified: using too many different materials would be expensive and inefficient. Using recyclable material, such as car tires, would be easy to find and manipulate into what we were making. We need to experiment more with our selected material to create our design for the seating space.

 

More sketches: A circular seating space, with a planter of flowers in the middle. Coming close to a final design!

 

Stay tuned for the final design!

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Mockups and Models

Details of our discussion and proposed idea.

 

Considering space is a big concern in the downtown region, our group has been thinking of Public Seating Space that is capable of being put away so they do not get into other people’s way. While researching, we began thinking about the design aspect. Our ideas include benches that lower into the ground and rises up for seating made possible by a hydraulic system. With space-saving in mind, we discussed about creating a folding chair that could be attached to any stable wall. It could fold out and back in with ease for a passerby to use. These could make for great bus stops in areas in the downtown with less sidewalk area.

In addition to this, the group has been thinking about how we can make the seating space a multi-purpose one. One of the group member suggested that we could look for ways to attach solar panels so that renewable green energy can be used to charge laptop or cell phone.

Another concern for our group is deciding which materials would work best with our proposed eco-friendly and multi-purposeful street furniture. We are giving preference to reusable materials such as wood skids, tires, or even doors since it looks more appropriate for our cause and is cost-effective. Using materials like skids and old tires could be interesting, as well as containers for holding plants and greenery.

 

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