Contemporary street furniture made for the roof terrace of the Manchester International Festival has been designed using Stokbord recycled plastic sheet and board following a competition among design students from Manchester School of Art.
Liverpool-based plastics recycler, Centriforce, worked alongside the students to come up with the outdoor seating for the prestigious roof terrace at the showcase Glass House venue in Manchester’s Albert Square.
To win the competition, the team of students presented to a ‘Dragon’s Den’-style panel representing senior University teaching staff, Manchester designers, MIF, and Centriforce. A total of 60 seats were fabricated with the help of Ferrious, a Manchester-based bespoke furniture design company responsible for creating the ‘look’ for Festival Square this year.
Following the event, the furniture will be transferred to the Art School to become a permanent feature of the School’s new roof top garden and should last for many years.
Paul Tempest, designer with Ferrious explained: “The students have come up with an innovative and practical piece of design by using the Stokbord sheets as fins so that rainwater drains off the furniture. At the same time the benches are heavy enough to be stable and wind-resistant.
“The Stokbord sheets were cut to shape within the University and by specialist CNC fabricators. They were assembled by the students themselves in our warehouse, so they got a real feel for what it is like to be a ‘hands on’ product manufacturer.”
The Year 2 Interior Design and Three Dimensional Design students were challenged to design the furniture using Stokbord because of its robust, practical, weatherproof and environmentally friendly credentials.
Ronnie Doctor, Marketing Manager for Centriforce Products, said: “The students have truly come up with a beautiful and practical design which makes a stunning centre piece to the roof garden. We were extremely impressed with their innovative thinking, which has used Stokbord in a completely new way to create a very refreshing and unusual street furniture design.
“Centriforce is always looking for new and innovative ways to transform our recycled plastic materials into useable and commercially-viable products. The students have really showed they can think creatively to build an end-product that is attractive, practical and great for the environment.”