Resting In The Urban Plastic Park

| By Leon Kirschgens
Rotterdam's river at night: Nearby is also the "Recycled Park", which is made of plastic waste.

Rotterdam has been attracting visitors with its "Recycled Park" in the harbour basin for several years. Visitors can enjoy the peace and greenery here - even though everything is made of plastic. A travel tip for the summer.

Admittedly: The summer slump has also arrived for us. But we think that's OK. The world is full of negative headlines and news about how the environment and our oceans are going to the dogs - so a holiday tip for those who are heading to the Netherlands this summer can't hurt. And certainly not if it's a tip from the "sustainability" category. For some years now, Rottderdam has been home to the floating "Recycled Park", which consists entirely of recycled plastic waste. As a park, it is nevertheless inviting, as it has plants, green sections and benches - all this directly in the harbour basin. It is also intended to create new habitats for plants and animals.

The "Recycled Park" is about 140 square metres in size and consists of many hexagonal plastic modules that float together on the water and can be expanded at any time. The material for the islands comes directly from the Nieuwe Maas river: with the help of special catch basins, plastic waste is filtered out of the water and then recycled.

Even the tiles in the seating areas of the islands are made of recycled PET bottles. The idea comes from the Recycled Island Foundation, which uses plastics sustainably in this way and at the same time frees the rivers from waste - an added value for people and the environment.

In addition, the concept also fulfils an ecological function, as the hexagonal platforms are planted, creating new habitats for birds or insects, for example. The undersides of the islands also have a rough structure and crevices - this allows algae and water plants to attach and fish to lay their eggs in a safe environment.

Building a floating object is not a first for Rotterdam, however, as the "Recycled Park" is located right next to the "Floating Pavilions": three glass domes that float on the water and serve as an experience centre to teach visitors about the connection between climate, water and sustainable architecture. But that's not all - in the future there will also be a "Floating Farm" in Rotterdam, where around 40 cows produce milk surrounded by water. So if you're in the neighbourhood - let's go!