All Terrains: 3 Futuristic Land, Sea & Air E-Vehicle Designs

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[ By WebUrbanist in Technology & Vehicles & Mods. ]

land sea air vehicles

This amazing all-terrain land variant is just the first of three compelling electric vehicles conceptualized with lightweight materials and green technologies and designed, respectively, for overground, aerial and underwater travel.

nimbus concept e car

nimbus offroad concept car

nimbus electric vehicle design

First of this series by Eduardo Galvani, the Nimbus features an electrical engine powered by a lithium-ion battery that works in parallel with a combustion micro-generator for recharging.

nimbus interior dashboard view

nimbus all terrain vehicle

nimbus on the road

Its structure is composed of carbon-fiber, titanium and aluminium, lightening its load. It also features rooftop solar cells and a regenerative brake mechanism helping it recover and save kinetic energy. Panoramic wraparound windows allow for views out in all directions, while key design elements are picked up in the dramatic sky and sea variants shown below.

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No Mirage: Unlock a Secret Pool Hidden in the Mojave Desert

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[ By WebUrbanist in Art & Installation & Sound. ]

desert pool installation project

An art installation with a side of rugged adventure, the Social Pool is a project open to the public but locked and with a location only revealed via coordinates that lead visitors on a long trek to its discovery.

desert secret hidden pool

Seekers must first travel to the MAK Center for Art and Architecture in West Hollywood and retrieve one of four keys that open the pool, and will be tasked with taking one gallon water to help refill it as well. Los Angeles area travelers do not stumble upon it by accident – it is not on any road, trail or path.

social pool uncovered sand

Keys are to be returned within 24 hours, whether or not you find the secret spot and uncover the cool pool of filtered water, powered by solar panels. You cannot reserve a key in advance – you must show up and see if one is available. Uncertainty is part of the experience, like it or not.

social pool remote desert

Designed by Austrian artist Alfredo Barsugli, LAist describes it as something “meant to reflect on the lengths humans would go to in the pursuit of luxury,” but also as a good excuse to spend some time exploring an amazing desert landscape.

underground beauty resort installation

underground desert spa sand

Barsugli is not new to strange desert installations – a previous piece, the Oderfla Beauty Resort, featured a spa building semi-submerged in desert sand.

social pool art installation

It is also worth stocking up on gas, food and water and watching out for snakes, lizards and hares along the way. Hint: the pool is not close to the MAK. Its position is only given broadly to the public: somewhere in the southern Mojave Desert between Joshua Tree and Apple Valley. Images by Alfredo Barsugli and Juliet Bennett Rylah of LAist.


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Metro Koi: Thousands of Fish Occupy Abandoned Bangkok Mall

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[ By WebUrbanist in Travel & Urban Exploration. ]

fish mall floor views

Built, closed, partially demolished, boarded up and ultimately deserted, the New World Mall in the capital city of Thailand has become home a strange and unexpected attraction.

fish mall vertical shot

Abandoned nearly two decades ago after violating building codes, the roof of the structure collapsed in a subsequent fire, leading the building to be partially filled with rainwater.

metro colorful wild fish

metro koi closeup picture

Standing pools throughout the place gave rise to a serious mosquito infestation, which the locals sought to combat by introducing fish that, in turn, bred, spread and inhabited the ruins.

fish mall front facade

fish mall outside vendors entrance

Since then, the mall has turned into a kind of alternative tourist destination where visitors flock to feed the fish, now occupying over 5,000 square feet of space originally intended for retail. Vendors have even sprung up in the area to sell scraps of food – throwing anything else into the standing water is strictly forbidden. More images of the building and its context can be found here.

fish mall escalator level

fish mall closeup columns

fish mall occupation habitat

RenegadeTravels explains how to get to this centrally-located abandonment: “The mall is only around 5 minutes’ walk from Khao San Road. Walk to the end of Khao San Road where the small glass police station is and turn right onto Chakrabongse Road. Then walk straight ahead until you come to the junction with Phra Sumen Road. This intersection is known as Bang Lam Pu Junction. You will see the main entrance to New World Mall here, but you can’t get in from the front.”


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16 Cap Redesigns Give 2nd Lives to 40,000 Used Cola Bottles

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coke bottle cap reuse

Aimed at promoting the creative reuse of plastic bottles, Coca-Cola has launched a project to give away caps that convert discarded drink containers to fun and practical alternative functions.

These so-called Second Lives adapters can turn waste vessels into everything from bubble blowers and squirt guns to night lights, shampoo dispensers, pencil sharpeners, paintbrushes and water-filled weights.

coke cap guerrilla marketing

The plan, hatched by Ogilvy & Mather China, is to distribute these caps for free in Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam, with the company encouraging people to take off the Coke labels to avoid confusion. The larger idea is to inspire alternative uses for old plastic bottles, getting people to think outside of the box about what is disposable and what could, in fact, have some sort of second life waiting within it.

coke cap alternative examples

“We are always looking for better solutions to reduce the use of plastic and increase recycling around the world,” said Leonardo O’Grady, ASEAN Director Integrated Marketing Communications, Coca-Cola. “The variety of our ‘2nd Lives’ caps shows that there are many creative ways to re-use plastic simply and practically, and also supports our global sustainability program.” 

second lives cola project

The project was piloted in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam in March, with an expected 40,000 bottle caps to be gifted throughout the country this year. The campaign is set to launch in Thailand and Indonesia at a later date. Still, it is worth wondering whether adding more plastic to the world is worthwhile. As neat as some of these designs are, will they ultimately reduce waste or contribute to it?


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Water Buses: New Nautical Transit Solution for Urban Islands

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[ By WebUrbanist in Technology & Vehicles & Mods. ]

water bus rendering

Fathoms beyond traditional boat taxis, this modular water bus proposal for Stockholm bridges critical gaps within the current public transit system while also making boarding faster and transfers easier.

water bus sketch idea

Developed by the KTH Royal Institute of Technology’s Department of Aeronautical and Vehicle Engineering, the Waterway 365 project fills in transportation voids, in part by taking the quickest and most direct routes possible across the water. Featuring wide back and side exits as well as, the solution is also bike-friendly for rapid boarding and disembarking. Adding versatility to the design, modular detachable sections make the approach more adaptable to different passenger volumes.

water bus flow diagram

These water buses are also designed to run year-round, operating through winter freezes. To save materials and energy, the designers eschewed steel reinforced hulls in favor of lighter metal. The resulting vehicles are structured to handle some ice but are ultimately to be paired with ice-breaking plow boats as needed in extreme conditions. Initially envisioned for the country’s biggest city, the idea is to deploy these to bridge other urban waterways around Sweden as well.

water bus route map

From the design study: “A city comprised of islands, Stockholm seems a natural for the concept of water transit. Door-to-door travel time on at least one typical trip across town, the study shows, could potentially be reduced by one-third.Connecting essential nodes, the idea is to reduce congestion as well as energy consumption in the long run.

water and land vehicles

nautical bus taxi design

water train horizontal

Water-based public transit already exists in many places, including the canals of Venice, but generally utilizes either flat-style ferries or streamlined boats. These approaches represent two extremes that this new water bus design aims to navigate between – the ease of getting on and off, on the one hand, versus speed and handling of the vehicle on the other.


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