The Waterbench

A rainwater collecting bench


Name of agency
Standaert Design
Name of designer(s)
Barbara Standaert
Name of company
Ebema N. V.
Deksel in waterdoorlatend beton, Opvangbak in architectonisch beton

in the category

Habitat Award 2020

Cities are becoming more and more paved surfaces. There is less green and the public space turns gray. The precious rainwater directly flows to streams and rivers through the sewerage. How can we restore natural processes and give back some green to our urbanized landscape?

The Waterbench responds to this with her functions as bench, planter and rainwater tank.

These functions are connected to each other. The rainwater naturally seeps through the porous concrete cover and is collected in a water-tight concrete reservoir where the plants find their water and food. The permanent water supply requires hardly any maintenance, ensures a permanent green touch in the city and has a cooling effect. The reservoir can be refilled when there is long-term drought. The porous concrete guarantees a dry seat, also on rainy days. Another major asset is the possibility to install the bench, adapted to the needs of the environment, without much effort. The waterbench is comfortable to stop for a moment, to catch up during a pause, to chill for a while or to welcome people. And this in the middle of some green with a story: the subtle combination of functions awakens curiosity and social interaction. Green and water bring people together and start conversations.