with zero waste
Recycled Building Materials Construct a Multi-Purpose Zero Waste Center in Japan
Back in 2003, Kamikatsu, a town in Tokushima Prefecture, became Japan’s first municipality to go zero waste, establishing a whopping 45 categories for recycling. Today, the village reuses about 80 percent of the garbage it generates, and the Kamikatsu Zero Waste Center is at the forefront of the community’s charge to become entirely trash-free in the coming years.
Designed by the architect Hiroshi Nakamura (previously), the recycling facility is comprised mostly of upcycled materials, including a mishmash of 700 donated windows cloaking its facade. Unprocessed timber and trimmings—cedar logging once was one of Kamikatsu’s main industries—structures the building and forms tresses designed to be disassembled and reused. A terrazzo flooring made of glass and ceramic shards runs through the center, and a bookshelf made of bright blue storage containers from a nearby shitake farm covers an entire wall.
The curved facility features a central drive-through area for dropping off unwanted materials and houses offices, a community hall, and a shop where residents can bring items they no longer use and others can take them home for free. On the other end of the building is a four-room hotel that’s decorated with wallpaper made of old newsprint, and Nakamura stamped “Why?” on the pages to prompt questions about consumerism. He elaborates:
Not bringing things in from outside the region is the first step in reducing wasteful packaging, transportation costs and fuel. When designing, I often go to not only the old garbage station but also the abandoned house in the town, the old government building before dismantling, the abandoned junior high school, etc… Materials used for the building are those that consider garbage as a resource and utilize it.
For more architectural projects from Nakamura and his Tokyo-based studio, check out his site. (via Dezeen)
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