Immerse in Future is a sustainable store that wants to raise awareness about the oceans’ pollution
By creating phygital spaces (a mix between the physical and the digital world), this project implements a truly process of dematerialization. This is the first sustainability criterion that guided our work, and the whole design process is based on the following 3 principles: reduce, reuse and recycle. “Immerse in Future” is a challenge to demonstrate how design can turn complex values into simple and intuitive solutions, placing people at the centre at all times.
“Immerse in Future” is far more than a simple store selling clothes made from recycled plastic. It’s an experience, that is made feasible thanks to Augmented Reality. This choice arises from the need to address new generations in a simple and immediate way, while being sustainable at the same time, since nothing can be created nor destroyed physically in a virtual world. That’s why “Immerse in Future” turns a sensitive subject by means of AR into media and entertainment, as well as a truly shopping experience. The shop is located in Milan, on the Darsena, making it an authentic experience revolving around water. The environment is dark and evocative inside, and illuminated almost only by large panels that surmount circular structures, like micro capsules, in which suggestive images of the water world are projected.
Overview of the Solution
“Immerse in Future” aims at making people rethink interior design not as decorative work, where the more you add, the more you increase the value. On the contrary, we believe in doing more with less. Since a temporary store needs many materials that are not used for long, a great deal of waste is produced. Tackling this problem has been our most ambitious goal. This is why we selected almost exclusively materials that can be used time and time again s after the exhibition. If this were not possible, we would still select materials that are fully recycled and recyclable.
Another aspect that we have taken into consideration which is often left behind, concerns indoor pollution. For this reason we have chosen a carpet made from a fiber that is capable of absorbing a high percentage of fine particulate matter that is present in the air. Finally, as regards suppliers, we have selected only local excellence, to significantly reduce the pollution caused by transport. Therefore, our project fully meets the criteria of Goal 12 and 14 of the Sustainable Development Goals. To convey the values of sustainability, the store involves the customer even during the purchasing phase, in which their product can be customized by choosing a certain date. In this way, the delivered product will be made with plastic collected on that specific day. Then, through an App, the customer can connect with those who have chosen the same product and date, to create a “sustainable community”.
The project revolves around a metaphor, inviting us to reflect on our past and present condition (darkness) and hope for the future (light). A future that we can begin to build starting from today with greater awareness and with the desire to be an active part of the change.
Michele Corna, Veronika Merlin and Baoshan Xue
Politecnico di Milano, School of Design, Italy
Prof. Silvia Piardi
“Immerse in Future” won an academic competition launched by Politecnico of Milano in collaboration with Adidas, the creative brief of which was to design a PopUp store that communicates the sustainability of the brand, addressing the Z generation in particular. For this reason, our main stakeholder is definitely Adidas. However, this new interior design approach is not only applicable to the retail world, but can also be extended to many other sectors: Exhibitions; Museums; Fairs; Public spaces. As a matter of fact, any installation area can benefit from our proposal. Not only by reducing footprints, but also by giving financial advantages, thanks to investments in resources that can be used over and over again.