One Man’s Trash Is Another Kid’s Playground

Re-purposing trash is an influential way of reflecting on the production and consumption processes of societies. It creates a picturesque awareness of the amount of trash we produce daily. Through the use of recycled and waste materials, Basurama has designed two public parks in Taipei, with hope that sustainability will be taken into consideration for future urban development.

Basurama, a Spanish design collective, works around the world, developing innovative uses for waste. Their goal is to raise awareness about the benefits of re-use and the implications of the consumer society. “Trash is just a label. Every material has potential if you think about it in a different way,” explains designer Juan López-Aranguren Blázquez.

Trash playground Taipei

In collaboration with Taiwan’s City Yeast, Basurama created ‘Re-create Taipei’, commissioned for Taipei’s World Design Capital 2016. The project allowed for the construction of two playgrounds located near Zhongxiao Xinsheng. “Kids Ambition Park” and “Swings Park” hope to make Taipei’s citizens reflect on the re-purposing of public space and materials. “We found that all playgrounds in Taipei more or less look the same,” says Juan. “We wanted to create something challenging and unique.”

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Kids Ambition Park

Constructed from large water tanks and supplemented with other materials, Kids Ambition Park offers a chance for kids to learn from playing. A ball pit, a labyrinth with various textures, tunnels, and sliding and climbing structures were installed. Located next to a kindergarten center, this installation transformed a vacant space into a park where children can play and explore.

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Swings Park

Located underneath a noisy expressway, “Swings Park” now occupies this enormous space. To create this park unwanted lampposts were welded together, resulting in an elevated swing park. Due to the noise from the freeway, people do not need to worry about disturbing neighbors and can let themselves go.

These parks may be built from waste materials, but they definitely don’t look like ‘trash’. By using locally sourced building materials and waste, Basurama can experiment with an assortment of materials. By using discarded items as building materials, children can learn about recycling resourcefulness while discovering and playing at the playgrounds. These ‘trash’ playgrounds are temporary installments and will stay on site until the conclusion of the World Design Capital.