Test Site

Imagine a world in which we borrowed and returned resources instead of consuming and disposing of them. You might often hear the terms ‘linear system’ and ‘circular system’ in conversations about our methods of consumption. You might ask how do these systems work and how do they relate to me? TEST SITE project is an open invitation to meet, learn, + explore these ideas together and apply them to our city, to apply them to this place at Kyrl’s Quay.

Humans are consumers. We have adopted a linear consumptive system in which we take, make, use and discard. This process has an end-of-life in sight from the point of inception and is repeated at mass scale the world over. More than 50% of us humans are urban dwellers. As urban dwellers we are responsible for over 80% of global consumption. 

Nature is cyclical, it regenerates as it consumes – picture the burnt leaves that fall to the ground each autumn – they decay into humus becoming food for the next cycle of growth. The leaves are retained as a resource in the cycle of growth. Nature does not create waste, it transforms and adapts its materials and remains resource rich.

Imagine if buildings were made up of smaller parts – like the leaf, the building elements became a resource bank for the next building? 

TEST SITE is a temporary intervention in a vacant site in Cork city centre. It is an opportunity for us humans to consider how we will shape the future of our making. It is an opportunity to consider the resources already in existence all around us and save them from becoming waste. 

As part of our intervention we will take materials and make a pavilion. It is through consciously taking and carefully making that we will explore a circular model  in which we do not consume with the inherent intention to discard. Instead we will take materials and make a pavilion on the site for the summer months. In the lead into Autumn we will dismantle and remake the pavilion in another location in the community. We will extend the life cycle of this temporary structure and we will ensure that when it reaches its end-of-life the materials can be dismantled, reused and eventually recycled. 

🖊️+📸 Ailbhe Cunningham