What do you get when you cross an innovative eco-conscious startup with your favorite source for architecture and design news? A custom upcycled skateboard designed by Bureo in AN’s logo colors. The board will be up for auction at A+D Museum’s CELEBRATE gala Saturday, June 28, part of the Los Angeles Design Festival. Headquartered in Santiago, Chile, Bureo manufactures plastic skateboards using fishnets collected in a local recycling program called Net Positiva. The company’s name comes from the Mapuche word for “waves,” and refers both to the ocean and to the hope that their small-scale intervention might lead to broader change. After a wildly successful Kickstarter campaign this spring, Bureo is preparing to ship its first model, the fish-shaped Minnow, beginning in August. For a shot at Bureo’s bespoke AN surfboard, purchase tickets to the CELEBRATE gala here. Other architects and artists creating skate and surf boards for the gala include Greg Lynn/Form, Karim Rashid, Erhlich Architects, Tom Wiscombe Architecture, Neil Denari Architects, and Richard Meier & Partners, to name a few.
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Of the 85 proposals submitted to a playground design competition hosted by Go Play!, few were as innovative as AnneMarie van Splunter's RubberTree, which landed an honorable mention. The Dutch designer's imaginative reuse of old car and motorcycle tires recalls the simplicity of children playing around a tree, inspired, in fact, by the rubber tree and its heavily exposed root system. Van Splunter sought to create a place where refugee children on the border of Burma and Thailand can be "rooted in solid ground." Proposals were asked to focus on elements including buildability, innovation, and overall design. RubberTree's proposed locally-sourced structural-bamboo armature was hoped to increase affordability and provide for local construction. An unnamed engineer purports that the entire structure could be built without the use of metal, allowing the tree to be built with local labor. However, the material life-spans of bamboo, rope, and tires in a tropical climate could lead to breakdown and potential safety hazards over time. While more expensive, steel would be a more ideal material in terms of safety. Safety issues aside, the innovative design demonstrates a novel method of reusing old tires and an inspiring reclamation of material. While the project won't be built as part of the competition, Van Splunter has reportedly received interest from her native Netherlands to build RubberTree, where a cooler climate and a steel structure could make the playground a reality. [Via Treehugger]