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DESIGN & STYLE

These Floating Planters Help Trap and Remove Rubbish from Melbourne's Yarra River

Helping remedy a (literally) rubbish situation.
By Lauren Vadnjal
April 07, 2016
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These Floating Planters Help Trap and Remove Rubbish from Melbourne's Yarra River

Helping remedy a (literally) rubbish situation.
By Lauren Vadnjal
April 07, 2016
  shares

Melbourne's Yarra River is known for a lot of things — like instigating a north-south city divide, being a sweet spot to have drinks next to, etc. — but being clean isn't really one of them. It's got a lot to do with that time it was a dumping ground for industrial run-off, sure, but it's also more visibly attributed to the litter that finds its way into the river. To help remedy this (literally) rubbish situation that's affecting the health and quality of that Yarra's water, local industrial designer Rowan Turnham has developed a floating device to help trap and remove litter from the waterway.

In collaboration with non-profit vegetation renewal group the Yarra Link Project, Turnham (through his company Amass Design) has developed Project Galada. Galada is a modular capture barrier that floats on the surface of the water to capture and collect litter that accumulates there. Designed to look like bike chains (very Melbourne), the pods link together to create a barrier suitable for the environment. As the Yarra flows  both ways, so the flap is opened by downstream flow (letting in litter), while an upstream flow pushes the flap closed (trapping litter).

The blue pods also act as buoyant planters, with roots that are submerged into the water to provide bio-filtration for the river. As well as removing cheeseburger wrappers from the Yarra, Project Galada will also help improve the health, biodiversity and quality of Melbourne's waterways both now and for the future. We still wouldn't swim in it, but still.

Published on April 07, 2016 by Lauren Vadnjal

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