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Amazing Industrial Design – Public Shelters 2020

| October 15, 2020 | 0 Comments
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Amazing Industrial Design – Public Shelters

These photographs show a public walkway in-between a building that makes pewter wares and a row of shop houses. This street, named River Valley Road, is in Singapore, a small island state in Southeast Asia. The pewter factory, The “Royal Selangor“, needs a covered space to organize mass participation activities. It is part and parcel of their marketing, to raise public awareness of their mission and also return some contributions back into society. As such, the area to be covered is huge in dimension. The architect and engineer had to collaborate to design a structure that would satisfy all basic requirements.


A permanent roof over the two rows of buildings did not satisfy the local area regulations. The ‘awning’ had to be high to allow the free flow of air circulation or else it would be stuffy. The use of air ventilators during off-season where there was no crowd was not justifiable in terms of cost. Another important consideration was to minimize the disruption to the natural and man constructed environment. An obtrusive structure would interfere with the landscaped beauty of the architectures already in existence.

So the roof had to be high, blend into the surroundings and in order to allow maximum natural light to reach the walkway, a construction material that was transparent was chosen. This material had additional patterns printed on it to provide a dash of geometrical shapes that would help to make the covering eye catching. Being relatively colorless, it does not add another dimension of color to its surroundings and thus is not intrusive. This roof needed beams to support it. The stainless steel lattice grid work looks interesting. The pattern is eye catching as the network of steel veins branch out from the center. It looks like a giant umbrella.

The use of stainless steel is a good choice. This metal is extremely durable. If the joints are well soldered, the structure should last an eternity. This product of industrial design met the requirements of function and economic cost. There are several umbrellas as the span of coverage of a single umbrella is limited. The clear fabric is seamless joined to encourage the continuity and flow of the design. This is a pretty massive structure as it can be seen from a distance of approximately 1 km away.

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After the sheltered walkway ends, the open space is used to create a natural landscape of miniature springs or fountains. Water sprouts from the level ground. This attempts to incorporate nature into an urban setting. The metallic structure might have given the impression of a concrete and metal jungle. It can be said marginally that the man made fountains are the attempts of balancing the natural topography of the land after violating it with buildings and huge canopies.

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Fountains without the base pool can be safely installed at a public location. Safety is a major concern as precautions are taken against small children from falling into a depth of water.

The design of this public shelter addresses environmental parameters. It meets the functional needs to provide shelter, natural ventilation and natural lighting. In addition, it develops the physical environment with the inclusion of small fountains to cater to the aesthetics’ aspect. Environment design affects and influences the industrial design. Ecology is usually used as the basis and the design is built around that. In this case of the huge public shelter, the design chosen had minimal effects on destroying the existing architecture. Environmental design is destined to combine industrial design and the ecology to produce an alternative to benefit the human users and local ecosystems.

In terms of maintenance, the designers are leaning towards low maintenance industrial designs. These low maintenance designs can be marketed as viable products.

Amazing Industrial Design – Public Shelters

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