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Two Cooperative Kids Figure Out an Awesome Way to Share One Bike

When I was in Hue, Vietnam, I met four schoolteachers who all lived in a single-room shack. The four women could only afford two bicycles between them, so the way they commuted was two to a bike–with the one sitting on the rear placing her feet on the pedals alongside the driver's feet and pedaling in sync. It seemed they'd been doing this for years. "More faster," one of the teachers cheerfully explained to me, "less tired."I can't tell what country the following video was shot in, though it also looks to be somewhere in Southeast Asia. In any case, these two clever kids have also figured out a way to share a single bike between them:I am dying to know A) How they thought this up, and B) How they get started!

Design Job: Studio Red seeks a World-class Designer/Director in Menlo Park, CA

Candidates should have an Industrial Design degree, 7+ years experience, and will be responsible for producing concept sketches/refined concept renderings of a wide variety of tech and non-tech products. They'll be directly responsible for successful aesthetic outcomes of multiple projects and will oversee and guide concepts from research through development.View the full design job here

Reader Submitted: ‘Painful’ Chair: An Original Approach to Traditional Woodworking

A handmade wooden chair not only demonstrates the beauty of the wood, but through stylistic choices also reveals the cultural influences and elements behind it. "Painful" doesn't mean that you feel painful when sitting in this chair. Instead, "painful" refers to the material language of this traditional "Ming" chair—the inspiration behind the chair, Chinese acupuncture, is translated into the form through the 800 hammered wood nails that make up the seat of the furniture piece.View the full project here

Using Cradle to Cradle to Eliminate the Concept of Waste

Presented by the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute and Autodesk, the Product Design Challenge asks emerging designers to develop new solutions for improving our environment through sustainable design. Each iteration of the challenge brings us closer to realizing the imperative to create a circular market standard. After receiving applications from 18 countries, the design challenge recognized winners in four categories: Best Student Project, Best Professional Project, Best Use of Aluminum, and Best Use of Autodesk Fusion 360. Find out more about their work below:Best Student Project: Gabriella Jacobsen, Onward BagJacobsen developed an aluminum stamp to press a wavelike pattern onto the finished bags—a storytelling element meant to instill a connection between user and nature. "It is not enough anymore to just design a computer bag. One must ask, 'Why should this computer bag exist? and 'Where in our product system does the life of this computer bag fit?'"The Virginia Tech student responded to the growing issue of plastic bag waste, which is a major pollutant of oceans and waterways despite the fact that the High Density Polyethylene used to make plastic bags is 100% recyclable. Her laptop bag is made from 60-70 recycled plastic bags, organic cotton canvas, canvas thread and biodegradable dyes. At the end of the product's life, users need only cut a few stitches to fully separate the two types of fabrics, allowing the entire bag to be recycled and composted respectively. Best Professional Project: Barent Roth, BikeShare Helmet"I envision a time when sustainable design thinking is so completely integrated into the process that it does not even require to be defined as such, it just is. With 80% of a product's environmental impacts being determined in the design phase, it is imperative that ecological solutions be woven into the design process of every object."Designer and educator Barent Roth designed a simple unisex style bike helmet intended to integrate with the growing bike share community as an optional purchase accompanying bike share memberships. The BikeShare Helmet uses a recycled aluminum foam shell and a sustainably grown cork liner to provide maximum protection with minimal bulk and weight. He incorporated mechanical flanges into the sides of the cork liner so the two layers could "snap" into place, so no glue is necessary to secure the cork to the aluminum shell. Best Use of Aluminum: Michiel Meurs, AtoB Seat"To me, Cradle to Cradle is a design-philosophy that turns the way we look at things upside-down."Along with his team, Meurs designed a seat for public transportation made from recycled aluminum, recycled PET and formaldehyde free bamboo plywood. In the research phase, they found out that current commuter seats require a whopping 60-120 parts for construction. Their design is focused on creating a far simpler approach, requiring just a basic aluminum frame, a continuous, ergonomic seat panel and customizable upholstery options. The category Best Use of Aluminum was a new addition in this round of the challenge, meant to highlight the "infinite recyclability" of the material. Best Use of Autodesk Fusion 360: The Engineers for a Sustainable World Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) Chapter, Sweeping the Nation with ChangeThe design incorporates a mechanism at the base of the broom handle that allows the handle to be adjusted between 0°, 45° and 90°. "This feature allows a customer to afford the functionality of three separate brooms for the material and monetary costs of one," note the designers. "The design-led revolution is ingrained in our generation and, as engineers, we see ourselves playing a large role in transforming today's industries."A group of RIT engineers developed a recyclable broom with a bristle head made of highly biodegradable material that can be replaced independently of the broom's other components. "We looked at everyday household items and wanted to transform one of the biggest wastes into something sustainable," they explained. "Broom bristles don't last very long and so the entire broom is then thrown out to go to a landfill." The product uses recycled aluminum, steel springs and wheat straw—an abundant crop with low commercial value to keep the final product cost-effective. The bi-annual Product Design Challenge is an ongoing platform. If you're interested in the Cradle to Cradle approach to design, keep an eye on our Calendar for updates on the upcoming call for submissions.

Germany Building Bicycle-Only Highway That Will Link Ten Cities

The ADFC is Germany's bicycle advocacy group, and they've come up with a funny term: MAMIL, which stands for Middle-Aged Man in Lycra. What they're referring to are studies that show it's typically macho dudes in their 30s and 40s who feel most safe riding a bike, particularly in adverse conditions; the number of bike-riding females, elderly, and well-parented children are kept down due to safety concerns. MAMILs"With MAMILs only, you cannot build a cycling nation," the ADFC states. "[There must be] younger and older people, fathers with children on their way to school, well-dressed women on their way to work, girlie girls in pink, ministers and doctors, teenagers on their way to sports training, musicians with double basses on their backs, elderly ladies on their way to the library [all riding bikes]."If you hit the "studies" link above, you'll find another study reporting that "in European cities with separated bicycle infrastructure, women account for 50% of riders." In other words, bike lanes bring equality. And now there's good news for the ADFC, as well as the residents in the Ruhr region of Germany: The country is launching a 100-kilometer (62-mile) fully-paved roadway dedicated entirely to bikes, no cars allowed.This "bicycle Autobahn," as Phys.org is calling it, will be located in the densest part of Germany. The Rhine-Ruhr metropolitan area has a population exceeding 12 million people spread over nearly a dozen cities, and thus this super bike lane will connect ten cities and four universities. Almost two million people live within two kilometres of the route and will be able to use sections for their daily commutes, said Martin Toennes of regional development group RVR.Aided by booming demand for electric bikes, which take the sting out of uphill sections, the new track should take 50,000 cars off the roads every day, an RVR study predicts.For now the bikeway has been kicked off with a 5-kilometer stretch that's 4 meters (13 feet) wide, as the rest of the path is projected to be; in order to complete the remaining 95 kilometers, financing is required. At €180 million (USD $197 million) the bikeway isn't cheap, and the question of whom will pay for it must be negotiated. So far the RVR is off to a good start: While they paid for 20% of the initial run, they got the local state government to pay for 30% and the EU to pick up the rest. With any luck, the ADFC will soon get their wish of seeing MAMILs and non-MAMILs alike all pedaling to work.It's not really called the "bicycle Autobahn," by the way; the cycleway's official name is the RS1 or Radschnellweg, which I believe translates to something like "Fast cycleway." (Can any of our German-speaking readers clarify?)

Catch the sun’s energy with these solar roof tiles

Although solar energy can be a good option in areas with sufficient sunshing, it is not used as much as it should be. One of the reasons of cited by home owners is the look-and-feel of regular solar panels. Some innovative companies, like SolTech, have come up with a solution that allows you to better […]
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HealthSouth To Expand, Renovate 42-Year-Old Rehabilitation Hospital

Lakeshore Rehabilitation plans to triple the number of private beds at the facility and increase the square footage by 40 percent.

HealthSouth Corporation (Birmingham, Ala.) plans to begin work in early 2016 to expand and renovate Lakeshore Rehabilitation Hospital in Birmingham, Ala. Firm Gresham, Smith and Partners (Nashville, Tenn.) has been chosen to provide architectural and interior design services on the project, which is expected to finish in the first quarter of 2019.read more

Hospital for Special Surgery To Expand In Westchester County

The 50,000-square-foot facility will be the operator’s largest outpatient center to date.

Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS; New York), part of the New York-Presbyterian Healthcare System, has signed a lease to open an outpatient center in White Plains, N.Y.The center will be approximately 50,000 square feet, making it the largest of the HSS outpatient centers. Construction is scheduled to begin in September 2016 and the project is expected to open in the fourth quarter of 2017.read more

Brockville General Hospital Names Shortlist Of Companies For Redevelopment Project

The five companies will be invited to respond to a request for proposals, which is expected to be issued in spring 2016.

Brockville General Hospital (Brockville, Ontario, Canada) and Infrastructure Ontario (IO) have shortlisted five companies to build and finance the hospital's redevelopment project.A request for qualifications process began in June 2015 and the following companies were shortlisted: PCL Constructors Canada, Inc.; Pomerleau Inc.; M. Sullivan and Son, Ltd.; EllisDon Corporation; and Walsh Canada.read more