Prototype Recycling Centre
The invisible infrastructure supporting waste disposal contribute to the dismal recycling rates in Singapore, with facilities and systems being out of sight and out of mind. A prototype recycling centre situated in the heart of the residential estate is proposed to deal with waste at the neighbourhood level through a decentralised process. Co-located with a community centre, shopping mall, and market and food centre, the complex efficiently harvests ‘waste material’ from its adjacent sources, while making visible the flow of materials.
Material as Resource
The centre is designed as a living museum to showcase the flow and transformation of materials. Various community facilities are injected to make this a ‘community centre for recycling’, rather than an industrial complex; the community is both able to witness the yet untapped potential of waste and also be part of the transformation process.
Community as Resource
The centre is designed for community and industrial symbiosis. Within it, the systems of food and plastic recycling, micro-gasification, and urban farming are integrated, with the by-products of one becoming resource for another. Through these, the unwanted materials from the community are transformed into products directly useable by the community.
Architecture as Resource
The integrated complex incorporates a community landmark, the old Jurong Theatre, retaining the existing building stock while adapting it to its new purpose. The architecture also employs building elements salvageable from the demolition of HDB estates to bring a familiar touch to a new means of reuse.
Alvin’s project explores how plastic recycling and management of food waste can be carried out at the community scale, thereby bringing about greater community participation and awareness. The recycled plastic is transformed into raw filaments. Through 3-D printing, valuable household products and urban farming equipment can be created for community use. The food waste management process also creates enough fertilizer to sustain urban farming for the community. The design of the recycling centre also adapts the existing Taman Jurong Cinema into his recycling project, while the construction of the recycling centre relies heavily on recycled building components recovered from building demolition. This micro-scaled and decentralized waste management system can be an interesting alternative worth reviewing.- Adj. Assoc. Prof. Teh Joo Heng