Design and Fabrication Lead
In San Francisco, one of the most expensive cities in the world, thousands of people of experiencing homelessness lack access to restrooms and have no other option, but to use the streets as a bathroom. Designed as a human waste solution, the PPlanter is public urinal and sink that uses modular biofilters (microorganisms and plants) to treat urine and wastewater. A rapidly deployable, light infrastructure model, it requires no utility connections and can be easily relocated to meet the community’s changing needs.
The plate steel structure unfolds into a working diagram of the processes it accommodates: a grid of containers house wetland plants that incrementally evapotranspire liquids and, in consort with microbes, consume nutrients. The living plants create a microclimate and a visual screen, while their growth acts as a visual indicator of the human participation that ensures their survival.
The PPlanter is an ongoing research and prototyping project. PPlanter is a project of Urban Biofilter and was originally launched by the Hyphae Design Lab in 2012.
Photos by Anastasia Victor