“There is no future to plastic other than to pollute”

In this week’s comments update, readers are debating CEO of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation Andrew Morlet’s statement that plastic can be used sustainably.

Plastic fantastic: a panel discussion at Dezeen Day saw designer Richard Hutten respond angrily to claims by Andrew Morlet, CEO of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, that plastic can be used sustainably, sparking reader debate.

“Plastic can only be recycled very few times,” said Yoem. “There is no future to plastic other than to pollute.”

Karol B went on: “Burning or any recycling consumes more and more energy. Generally the problem is with the paradigm of our growth economy – growth is measured by over production and over consumption.”

Paul B was intrigued by Morlet’s comments: “It’s not the first time I’ve heard people say that technology of the future will solve these problems and clean up the planet. If technology of the future will solve it all, then by how much do we need to alter our behaviour today?”

“Medicine has made great strides in preventing, treating and sometimes curing cancer. Quitting is not a path to success,” said Speed in response to Hutten calling plastic “the cancer of our planet”.

For one reader, Hutten’s response felt unfair:

Is plastic the cancer of our planet? Join the discussion ›


Over the rainbow: as part of its Be True campaign advocating equality and inclusivity of LGBT+ athletes, Nike painted the running lanes of a refurbished track at Los Angeles City College the colours of the pride flag. Not everyone is jumping for joy though.

“The colors are nice but too bad Nike ruined it by making it political. Not everyone wants to have politics every waking minute,” said Ron.

Sir Fix elaborated: “What happens with students who don’t believe in homosexuality and such practices? How does imposing this on all students amount to freedom for all?”

“Can’t one just appreciate the bright colours?” replied Benny. “Don’t they instil some sense of innate joy? They don’t have to mean anything if you don’t want them to. Freedom for all to enjoy indeed.”

BT76 was delighted: “That looks pretty freaking awesome, way to give some personality to a renovation.”

This commenter looked at the track from a different perspective altogether:

Was Nike right to paint the track? Join the discussion ›


Liam Young at Dezeen Day

Liam Young at Dezeen Day

Game over: some readers disagree with architect and film director Liam Young who says that architects could have more influence if they applied their skills to video games instead of designing “rich houses for rich people”.

“The game industry has trained people for that,” said Zea Newland.

Alfred Hitchcock agreed: “Architects don’t generally design film and theatre sets. It’s a different discipline.”

“Why bog down creativity in a virtual world with physics?” asked Tom Kowalski.

“If you went to school to design buildings and other structures, then do that,” continued Dough Lough. “Stay in your realm. Video games don’t have to be designed as a liveable, energy efficient, safe environment. Just as homes for the rich should not be designed as an interactive CG environment where you can blow up sh*t.”

One reader thinks that architects should focus on other things:

Do you agree with Young? Join the discussion ›


The Heights by BIG

The Heights by BIG

Lesson learnt: readers are somewhat impressed with BIG’s design for a school in Virginia featuring cascading terraces, but think the firm could have done better.

“Okay, I simply can’t hate this one,” said Miles Teg. “I’m definitely not a fan of BIG, but I have to admit this is one of the firm’s better works.”

“When you see a BIG building you can be sure a student somewhere is thinking, ‘this is exactly what I designed last year for my composition class’,” continued Jacopo. “It’s not necessarily a bad thing. The company presents very loud architecture, its character comes from a strong exterior gesture rather than a subtle refined process and details, but overall I think it’s always nice to see.”

Benny was less forgiving: “This building is a prime example of what’s lacking from BIG’s work. BIG only ever takes its projects just far enough, but never past that point where they are just skating by to get the passing grade.”

As was Bras Cubas: “A team of 50 architects to do this? But there isn’t even good detailing or lighting and the spaces seem claustrophobic. What did they spend their time on?”

This reader was distracted by the building’s plans:

Are you a fan of BIG’s design? Join the discussion ›

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