PARTNER: PAM Saint-Gobain
PROJECT TYPE: Product Concept, r&d
STUDENT GROUP: MA Product & Furniture Design
Saint-Gobain PAM is a supplier of ductile iron and cast iron products to the UK’s key utilities, telecoms, highways, civil engineering andconstruction companies. PAM approached Birmingham School of Architecture & Design to look at one of their key products – the ordinary manhole cover – and look to reimagine how this ubiquitous piece of street furniture can offer innovative new opportunities for a future Smart City.
Postgraduate students visualised their conceptual ideas, integrating lighting and projection technologies to have a visual output, whilst its hidden sensors collect data on traffic flows, pedestrian movement and surface water drainage. This information can be utilised by municipal authorities or utility companies, improving road safety or water management.
Saint-Gobain PAM selected one of the projects for further development and a prize for the winning student.
images: Magic Crossing by Ziqiao Wang.