Warsaw firm to give old wind turbines new lease of life as sleek outdoor eco furniture
Benches and other outdoor architectural features made from recycled wind turbines are among the standout elements of an innovative new Warsaw housing development seeking to reduce environmental impacts.
The project by real-estate developer Yareal, will be Poland’s largest project to assume a widespread application for discarded wind turbine blades in its design, transforming them into elements of public use in communal areas, such as outdoor seating.
Jacek Zengteler, general manager of Yareal said: “Within the area of the investment we plan to introduce small architectural elements made from parts of turbine blades, however on a much wider scale.
“These can be, not just composite piece of furniture or flowerpots, but also outdoor baby changing and feeding stations and even substantially larger constructions such as a roof over a bicycle parking.
“Instead of buying furniture made from new materials, we will use those that already exist, incredibly resistant and sturdy materials, which have stopped being needed in their primary use.
“Together with recycling experts we are currently designing the contents of the communal space of a large patio within the housing development and also a public park next to the development.”
It is estimated that by 2023, around 14,000 wind turbine blades will need to be unassembled in Europe in line with the end of their useful lifespan, equating to around 60, 000 tonnes of composite, which, until now has been broken up and burned.
The University of Cambridge has also estimated that wind turbines could generate 43 million tons of waste by 2050, making ‘green waste’ or more specifically ‘wind waste’ a serious problem.
To try to counter the problem, an increasing number of firms are looking for ways of repurposing discarded wind turbine blades and putting them to another use.
Active in the recycling trade for 21 years, Anmet, based in the small town of Szprotawa in west Poland, are a case in point, with their subsidiary, AIRchitecture, established specifically to deal with propellers and turbines.
Yareal has now partnered with Anmet as well as GP Renewables Group and WINGS FOR LIVING, the former two of which were behind the recent construction of Poland’s first footbridge made from recycled wind turbine blades and opened in the village of Szprotawa.
Yareal’s first constructions made of wind turbine blades will be used to furnish the outside area of the sales offices of its new development, as well as being used to make an advertising board, after which they will be seen throughout the newly opened housing development.
Jakub Kosiński, Chief Marketing Officer GP Renewables said: “The furniture designed for Yareal for public spaces will be resistant to changing weather conditions and easy to maintain.
“The elements of reused composite can be signposted with information from what windfarm they have been taken as well as how much energy they produced in their ‘first life’.
“This will enable us to arrange , for example a square, or garden, in a unique style, and to simultaneously make the idea of a ‘second life’ for wind turbines a reality, as it will for decades serve as a recreational bench, table or shelter protecting bikes from rainfall.”