Today’s Solutions: January 19, 2022

Large-scale development projects usually require architectural mockups typically constructed from high-end, resilient materials, designed to simulate various parts of a planned building. Unfortunately, instead of being repurposed or put to good use after review, those architectural mockups are typically discarded as waste into landfills.

That may no longer be that case in New York City, thanks to design group New Affiliates and architect Samuel Stewart-Halevy, who have recently launched Testbeds – an innovative initiative to transform architectural mockups, which have served their initial purpose, into community structures, such as classrooms, greenhouses, and sheds.

The Testbeds’ pilot project will be located at the Edgemere Coalition Community Garden in Queens where, in collaboration with NYC Parks GreenThumb division, the designers hope to construct a multipurpose adaptive reuse structure in fall 2020.

As part of the project, the team will try and redirect architectural mockups from New York’s luxury real estate market to historically disinvested communities in the outer boroughs. The designers seek to breathe new life into the mockups by reimagining them into elements for new greenhouses, casitas, tool sheds, cold, frames, classrooms, and other garden structures.

Currently, the Testbeds team is currently fundraising for its pilot project and looking for partners and collaborators for this and future projects. Hopefully, the project will come to fruition soon and will inspire more real estate companies to join the reuse bandwagon.

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