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Reincarnated Plastic

Switch Competitions: Tomb of Waste  | Reshma Esther Thomas, Aswin Senthil, Naveen Lenin, Shaili Patel

The design aims to rehabilitate the adjoining areas of Howrah Bridge which adjoins with Sonagachi, the largest red-light district in South-East Asia. It is estimated among various sources that around 6,000-30,000 women are employed as sex workers and most of the women are product of illegal human trafficking for a profession that is not regulated by law and is seen below standards in the eyes of the society. The site chosen acts as a flower market during daytime and a rampant prostitution and drug peddling ring at night.

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The design aims at using construction as a means of activism where the site is a flower market in the day and is a open pavillion with activities throughout the day, thereby encouraging movement of general public and thereby deterring crime. 


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The design also aims to tackle the issue of single use plastic by creating empathy amongst the citizens of the usage of plastic in our daily lives. The adjoining Hooghly River one of the most polluted in the country. The river, a poster image for the city is today clogged with plastic and various other waste, making it one of the most polluted rivers in the country, transitioning it from a home to flora and fauna to a bed for filth and as a dumping yard.  All materials used to construct the pavillion is made out of reused single use plastic.

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The design consists of underground plaza where one can see through a transparent wall, the state of the river, as plastic continues to replace the rich underwater life. This plastic by means of a sieve, gets collected in the circular columns surrounded by seating spaces underground. 

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The plastic collected is then formed as a roofing structure for the public plaza which houses the existing flower market along the banks of the river and the Howrah Bridge. Hence what was once thrown into the river, makes it way again into the lives of people, this times offering shelter to those who threw it away. This reinforces the multiple uses of the material and its dynamic nature.

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The gabion wall as a prototype can be used across the globe as a enclosure structures such as floors, walls and roofing structures. The transparency of the material allowing us to see the outside. Thereby plastic makes its way, once again into the lives of the citizens, in a way they shall be thankful for.


Gabion Wall

Howrah Bridge Installation

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