Waste Disposal Becomes Sexy

Katherine Fung pens a feature in The Architect's Newspaper on the recent wave of projects seeking to improve the way our waste management infrastructure looks and works.

1 minute read

February 13, 2012, 7:00 AM PST

By Jonathan Nettler @nettsj


Focusing on such projects as the Newtown Creek wastewater treatment plant and Sunset Park recycling facility in Brooklyn, and ecoparks and pneumatic tubes in Barcelona, Fung looks at the efforts of cities to, "modernize their current waste-management strategies with an eye to heightening design quality, sustainability, and accountability."

One fascinating system that Fung describes is the "Jetsons-like" network of underground pneumatic tubes Barcelona, and other cities to a more limited extent, use to collect garbage and convey it to collection plants.

"Residents and business owners deposit garbage into portholes on the street, and an underground network of pneumatic tubes whisks everything away to a collection plant. Organic waste gets diverted for conversion into biogas, which heats buildings while recyclables are picked up by truck."

In seven years, when the system in complete, it is expected to serve one-third of Barcelona.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012 in The Architect's Newspaper

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