All items from Web Urbanist

Wipe Left: Getting A Handle On The Roll Front Toilet Seat

[ By Steve in Design & Fixtures & Interiors. ]

The Bog Standard Toilet Seat Roll Holder may be the sanitation solution nobody asked for but British designer Henry Franks really doesn’t give a crap.

“Bog Standard” is an oak wood toilet seat with a TP roll holder deliberately and seamlessly integrated into the front of the seat. Now this is where most folks would insert the classic, crying-anime-girl “why would you do that??” meme but bear with us: there’s a method behind (pun unintended) Franks’ madness.

Reinventing the Cat: Mobile Succulent Planter Robot Seeks Out Sunlight

[ By WebUrbanist in Gadgets & Geekery & Technology. ]

This robotic “smart” planter wanders around on six articulated legs to make sure your precious greens get enough natural light, prompting the observation: “This is called a cat. You’ve invented a cat.”

And there’s something to the comparison — cats self-regulate, so why not plants? Heliotropism draws plantlife naturally to the sun for nutrients, causing owners to shift around their habitats, but there’s no need with this bot. It can even stomp to demand water, like an impatient pet.

Developed by Vincross in China, the self-optimizing micro-robot can walk around and make sure any houseplant gets sufficient sun or shade. The HEXA was originally a simple walker, until its inventor put a pot into it.

Bike Route 66: Historic Roadway Open to Two-Wheeled Adventurers

[ By SA Rogers in Destinations & Sights & Travel. ]

The loneliness of mostly-abandoned Route 66 is all the more cutting for the towns that once thrived along its 2,448-mile length, many of which declined or dried up altogether when it was decommissioned in the 1970s and ‘80s. The famous route that brought migrants west during the Dust Bowl of the 1930s and served as a symbol of the open road in later decades became irrelevant with the construction of new highways, and while some states have incorporated it into local roadways, many stretches were left to crumble. Now, the United States Bicycle Route 66 is set to revive it, following roughly the same course.

The Gardenway

Snug Streets: Painted Pavement & Paver Rugs Animate Boring City Surfaces

[ By WebUrbanist in Art & Street Art & Graffiti. ]

Painted patterns turn ordinary sidewalks and other urban surfaces into geometric artworks, creating a level of creative interaction as well as domestic intimacy in public spaces.

European artist Ali (Arthur-Louis Ignoré) takes cues from ancient decorative rug design traditions as well natural and geometric forms from other ornamental sources.

Using simple white-on-gray, the drawings themselves can be simple at times, or playful. Their contrast with monotonous paving stones and asphalt brings dull areas to life with a bit of unconventional decor.

Some span entire alleys, streets or even rooftops, reaching up to 10,000 square feet in size, and spanning cities in France, Finland, Canada and the United States.

New York’s Newest Waterfront Park Revitalizes an Abandoned Industrial Site

[ By SA Rogers in Destinations & Sights & Travel. ]

In Long Island City, nearly 11 acres of continuous waterfront park have bloomed along a formerly abandoned industrial landscape, offering a buffet of recreational opportunities while protecting the shoreline from floodwaters. The second phase of Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park, which begins south of 54th avenue and wraps around Newton Creek, is officially open to the public, adding to the features completed in 2013. Architects Weiss/Manfredi call it “a new model for waterfront resilience,” an oasis of green that can act as a buffer in extreme weather conditions.

Skywalk of Gibraltar: Stunning Views from a Converted WWII Lookout Station

[ By WebUrbanist in Architecture & Public & Institutional. ]

Cantilevered off the steep edges, near the top of the famous Rock of Gibraltar, it’s hard to believe this peaceful viewing platform once housed anti-aircraft guns, its critical location a strategic lynchpin during World War II.

Developed by Arc Designs, the Skywalk sits in the Upper Rock Nature Reserve on top of a natural stone base, accessed by steel stairs (or a panoramic lift) from below. The base of the gun emplacements have become benches.

Offering panoramic views of Europe and Africa, the Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic Ocean, it is easy to see why this place was known as the Pillars of Hercules